I think a part of growing up comes with realizing what traits you possess – good and bad. It’s the reality that human beings are built with inherent goods and bads, but that we can always work on these to enhance or fix these traits. But, the biggest step is recognizing that we have flaws as well as pluses.
I think one of my biggest flaws is that I’m too much of a sponge when it comes to adopting behaviours of my companions. I noticed it when I was younger, but chalked it up to ignorance, immaturity and naivety. The problem is, it’s not really going away. I find that when I’m with certain people, I pick up their habits and even their mentality. It’s not always a bad thing, because I think it’s one of the traits that allows me to be as empathetic as I am. It can be bad when I find myself questioning long-held moral codes with flimsy excuses. For example, the idea that people should just have ‘fun’ if they’re not in a serious committed relationship kind of turns me off. It’s not something I’d judge other people on, but it’s not something I could do willingly. Basically, I figure that it’s more meaningful when sex is with someone you care about rather than having it fulfill some sort of animal need (that really, if you think about it isn’t being fulfilled if you’re not popping out the kids).
Anyways, I digress. I’m starting to think that maybe the thoughts floating about in my head aren’t really my own. I mean, there is this famous quote somewhere that goes something along the lines of “no thought is ever original” and it’s basically true. But the thing is, we take someone else’s thoughts/ideas/morals, etc and we build upon them to make our own versions. The thing is, I’m wondering if I even have that ability to build on other ideas. I feel like sometimes I just take ideas and somehow make them my own. I trick myself into believing they’re what I want and I just go with that until it doesn’t work anymore.
It’s probably why I’m in the situation I am when it comes to my profession. The thing is, I don’t have one. I feel like the problem is that I never discussed career goals with my friends, so I never had any ideas on what to do with my own goals. As a result, when I graduated I didn’t have any clue what to do, while all my friends already had their plans set up. Ultimately this was what caused me to spin-tail into a depression.
In the depths of that depression, I started realizing that I hadn’t set up any goals or any visions for what I wanted in my future. In all honesty, I didn’t think I’d make it as far as I did… what do I mean by that? Well, not to sound morbid or suicidal, but I always figured that something would happen to me by the time I hit my teens (like 16-20). Either I’d get finished off my a truck careening down the wrong lane, or I’d stumble onto acting or photography or art or something. But, reality is … unless you’re out there looking, things don’t just come to find you. And it was a hard reality pill to swallow at the time. I think the problem stemmed from the fact that I spent too much of my childhood watching t.v. shows or movies or reading books where they ALL had happy endings. Okay, nevermind the happy endings, they ALL had something happen to the protagonist.
But here’s the thing, what if we’re not protagonists in our own stories? What if we’re supporting players for someone else’s stories and we just sit around in our dull lives waiting for them to come around so that we can play our minor part. After that, what happens then they leave? What happens when Dorothy passes through Munchkin valley? I sometimes wonder now if they had lives leading up to her arrival or lives afterwards… because ultimately, what gave them significance was her presence. It’s saddening to wonder if our lives are like that too…