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Thursday, January 5, 2012

I have basic needs

I'm not gonna lie - I'm a little pissed off that no one commented on my super cute new hat. The receptionists in my office almost always compliment my outfit and/or accessories, but for the past two days when I've come in with my new winter hat, they've said nothing. Does that mean they think it's hideous? I don't know that I trust their fashion sense anyway, but still - what am I to make of their silence??? Even the couple of other people I've seen haven't said peep about it. My husband said, "That's a silly hat. Err - I mean 'festive.'" Whatever - I'm used to comments like that from him. At least he noticed it, and for that, he gets points. (Hey - he's a guy - there's a steep grading curve for them because they are all so fashionally challenged.) But I am kind of annoyed that none of my usual fans complimented me on it.

I guess that's to show that I need reinforcement. Of course I like to think I'm an independent, self-confident woman, which generally I am. But who doesn't like a compliment every now and then? As I've said before, I write this blog for my fans, I post irreverent Facebook updates to humor others, and while I don't choose my outfits or accessories to please others, I do like it when they comment about my selections. I think this is healthy - reacting and responding to social cues and reinforcement. Professionals in my field might call this having an "external locus of control," and sure, everything is best in moderation and I think I have a fair amount of an internal locus of control, too. However, I am clearly someone who could not happily exist in a vacuum. I need other people - both to feed my sense of curiosity and fill my daily quota of people watching and subsequent snarky commentary, but also to give me feedback about how I'm doing in the world. Am I nice to others (at least to their faces), do I do good work, do these shoes make my feet look fat, do I have a fuzzy on my back, etc? The world is about interaction and relationships, and dammit, when people don't tell me they love my new hat (or I think I'd be okay even if they said they hated it - something, anything will do!), I just feel all alone and sad. So please, if you're reading this and you see me sporting my new (and might I say awesome) winter hat, please tell me how cute it is! I knew I could count on you. And as for my damn coworkers - poo on them. See if I comment on their matching argyle socks and sweater next time, or their corduroy pants and horizontal striped shirt that clearly should not be worn together. I won't even pretend to notice them, much less like them. So there.

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Hi. My name is Melissa, and I am a poor follow-througher.

Okay - that might be an understatement. Of the year. Well, it's only the fourth day of the year, so let's go with of the decade... Anyway - as I just said, I am a poor follow-througher. (Now you say, "Hi Melissa." Then I go on and on about my problem - see below.) Perhaps you've never been to a PFTA meeting before, though, so let me say a little more about my problem. You see, I start things and don't finish. I think I've written about this previously, but just in case you missed it, I wanted to reiterate the fact and point out what is clearly obvious. I do not keep up with most things I begin. This is different than quitting (that's another meeting and they have copyrights to their name, so please be careful not to confuse the two - they get very angry...). Quitting is more of a conscious decision to stop doing something. Failure to follow through, however, is much less conscious and kind of just happens. For that reason, I think it's a tougher demon to battle. How can you fight something you don't even know is happening? It's like trying to prevent a unibrow by plucking stray eyebrow hairs before they even come through the skin. You can certaily poke around with the tweezers and look for them, but more than likely, you'll just end up with blotchy red skin and a couple of scratches, and in a day or two, that damn unibrow will be in full form without you even realizing it until the lady in front of you at the slower-than-molasses-post-office-line can't stop staring. Clearly, it's much easier to wake up every morning, march to the bathroom, and arm yourself with tweezers and flourescent lights bright enough to whiten your teeth, and check to see if your unibrow is there. If so, quit letting it grow and pluck the damn thing. Ultimately, this was a very long winded way of illustrating my point that it's much easier to quit something than it is to stop following through on it. But I didn't mean to go there. If there are any quitters reading this (and you haven't quit reading already), I don't mean to offend you or sound like I'm saying my problem is worse than yours. It's just that it really is. And it's damn hard to fix.

The last time I blogged was in August. Of last year. Five months ago. That's pathetic, to say the least. Wait - maybe I'm being too hard on myself? I have changed my status updates on Facebook pretty regularly. I think of those as mini blogs - or at least they are in the way I use them. I have no desire to bore my Facebook friends with my daily to do list that I never accomplish and then whine about, generic "Happy Holidays" wishes in attempts to try to be respectful of all of my friends (Christian, Jewish, and Athiest alike), vague and so desperately calling for attention posts about mysterious happenings in my life that I'm not going to elaborate on but want you to ask me about anyway, or with my current geographical location that I know you could care less about. Instead, I use my Facebook status updates to air out the random thoughts that go through my mind. I don't know what else to do with them, and I'm sure if I tried actually having a conversation with people about some of these things, they'd look at me strangely and start to slowly back away with very polite yet simultaneously terrified smiles on their faces. And shortly thereafter, my kids would be escorted to their new family by Social Services, my clients would all stop showing up, and my boss would want to have a "friendly chat." Eek. As you can see - it's not often a good idea to share these muslings of mine with people in the real world, so I take a far safer approach of posting them to all my friends, in writing, on the internet (from which we know things can never really be deleted), right below my full name and hometown.

But - I digress. My Facebook status updates are certainly important (and even entertaining, I hope!), and could be elaborated into full blog posts if I took the time and saw things through (are you picking up on my theme yet?), but I didn't, and now my blog has been inactive for so long I'm surprised it's actually still here. I must get better at this. I must, I must, I must increase my b... Wait - sorry - wrong post.

Okay - so back on task. I was writing about following through and keeping up with things I start. I do try. I really do. I have the best intentions, and I tell myself "this time will be different." I get these great big ideas and I have to start them, whether it's blogging, or rearranging the furniture in my office, or giving myself a home pedi at midnight on a Tuesday. I go in in a fury - with so much energy and motivation that I worry I'll break something, but then I don't know what happens. I lose interest, or I hit a roadblock, or some other great big idea comes along and I get busy doing that one... Sometimes I stick with things for a little while, other times a bit longer, but eventually, I stop following through on almost everything that doesn't pay me, keep me alive, or scream and yell at me to keep it alive. At least there's that, I guess. I think I'm a decent employee (or at least I fake it well enough not to get noticed), I manage to feed and groom myself (admittedly, some days are certainly better than others), and I think I am a pretty good mom. Oh, and I've been married for almost 9 years, and with that same man for 7 1/2 years before that. But really - I can't take all the credit there... We were living together for most of that time, and it would have been too complicated to just stop following through on a relationship - you know, having to deal with separating our finances, learning how to take out my own trash, and figuring out a way to get all my electronics set up and in working condition. And if you're reading this, dear, ignore all of that and know that I didn't quit you because I love you. Truly.

So - here I am. Five months after last posting in this blog, and I'm trying to get back into it. Who knows how long this attempt will last - maybe a few weeks, a month, a few months? I guarantee there will be future lapses, though, so don't hold your breath. If you are the type of person who needs dependability, stability, and predictability, you are in the WRONG place, buddy. And seriously - you're freaking boring! Live a little, would you??? Anyway - I will give this try my all and try to stick with it. I know my loyal fans are eagerly awaiting more posts from me (and by "fans," I mean Lori), and I can't let them (err - her) down. As we celebs always say, "I owe it all to my fans. It's them who keep me going!" Ditto.

So here's to new plans. Or renewed plans. I will be a better follow-througher. Will you please be my sponsor?