Growing Upward and Inward
Ten years ago, I was about to graduate high school. I was a different person then, which is a completely normal and expected thing to say. Fundamentally, some things stuck around. My obsession with structure, schedules, organization. My beliefs, or lack there of, have stayed the same. I still don't like or want kids. I was an animal lover, and now I have three dogs and two cats to show for it. I was a nature lover, and now I've hiked and camped all over the place, even all alone. I was outgoing to some extent, and now I don't really give much of a fuck.
I considered myself a "hopeless romantic", which makes my stomach turn now. I'm not really sure what changed that part of me, or what made me grow inward in these last few years. I've always been somewhat reserved in the emotion category. That's a nature/nurture argument. It just wasn't really a thing in my family. We never screamed at each other, but we also never cuddled up and loved on each other, either. I'm not complaining, I don't have any resentment. My family is what it is and I wouldn't have it any other way. I also don't blame them, because I was a romantic person, once.
In so many ways, I have grown upward and outward. I'm successful, at least within my own standards. My job is melting away into that "career" word, and I'm not freaked out at all. I'm traveling. I'm exercising. I'm becoming financially responsible. I'm pushing myself to do things that make me nervous, and I'm excelling.
Emotionally, I'm backpedalling. Fuck, it's why I started writing in this blog. The thoughts and feelings and emotions are in there, but figuring out how to compose and express them are foreign to me. The idea of "love" seems farfetched. Letting down my walls, a sign of weakness, foolishness.
Part of me wants it, more than anything. To have what I've had in the past, and taken for granted, maybe. I easily hopped from relationship to relationship when I was younger. My romantic life has been a train gradually losing speed. Not that any of my relationships were that terrible - there was no metaphorical train wreck. They just lost their steam because I grew inward. Rather than fight, I shut down.
So here I am, 27-years-old, happy but cynical. There's a lurking panic in the back of my brain, triggered by others' PDA, by sexy episodes of Shameless, by every engagement announcement. It's "What's wrong with me? Why don't I have that?" blaring on repeat. When really, I know the answer.
Einstein said, "Insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results." Maybe, I never looked into it, but that sentence has always stuck with me whenever something is making me (or anyone else) unhappy. So that's just it. I need to take a handle on what makes me inward and broken, and learn how to dig back out.