old sneakers

I’m hard on my stuff.  I go through ethernet cords like it’s an Olympic event.  My hard drive is ridiculously full, and I’m always in this race to delete stuff so I can put more stuff on it without going ass-plodey.  I have worn sneakers until my little toes jutted through–and I refused to get a new pair because these…well…fit so well, even if they rubbed a little.

I embrace change like a ninja warrier, but–when something works for me–I work it.  I don’t let go.  I hug it until it falls apart in my hand.  I’m like this with absolutely everything.  For better or for worse.

In my quest to get “healthy,” I’ve changed a lot of that–for better or worse.  I’ve tried very hard to take things slow and do better at taking care of myself.  I am getting pretty good at letting things go when they’re not the best fit for me.

But–I think–in my rush to be different–to break habits that do need breaking–I sometimes discount who I actually am.  Or I make choices that don’t honor who I am.  Like–it’s great to have a job that gives me time to take care of myself and have balance.  But if I have no vocabulary for balance?  If parts of it don’t fit who I am NOW–if I have zero tools to make the healthy choices I need to make?  All the damn time in the world won’t change me or the choices I continually make.  It just means, I have no excuses left–and the choices I make are blatantly obvious.

The truth is–I don’t eat breakfast, often, because taking the time out for myself feels excessive.  Or unnecessary.  I’ve skipped breakfast all my life, and yea–my health has suffered, off and on, but I feel okay.  It didn’t kill me.  I have to get to a point of extremes before I make the good choices.  And that has everything to do with me…not how busy I am or anything I’m committing to.

A part of me gets off on being too busy–makes choices to stay too busy.  Because I like to punish myself.  There are many reasons why, and my therapist believes the work I do every day–no matter what–is really hard on me.  It’s me beating myself up.  So, more time means little.

The problem is that I like being beat up.  Some part of me thinks I deserve it and has embraced it as required.

What I’ve learned is that I can choose things on my own terms, though.  I can’t really leave my profession now–though it probably isn’t something I can or should do for much longer.  I’m working on that.  But I can choose the ways I engage that profession.

What I realized is that, for me, more time meant more numbing–and my job was my way of doing that.  It meant I could be passive.  It meant I could hibernate and hide out.  It meant I stayed in one place and wasn’t all that challenged.

Today’s my first day back at a familiar place.  It was not a good place for me when I decided to leave before.  I needed a kick in my butt and some perspective.  Truth be told–I was burnt out.  Exhausted, empty, disengaged, fed up.

But I chose to come back because I like my boss and my team.  It gets frustrating, sometimes, but I can choose to react better.  I can stop taking the beatings and change the conversation, so I’m engaged and feeling better about my involvement.  I have a tendency to take crap and not say anything.  And that’s on me.  I can’t expect change if I don’t instigate it.  I can’t be mad if I say nothing.

I like being busy.  Partially because I’m beating myself up.  Partially because it keeps me awake and present in my life.  I need to get back to feeling like I used to when I returned to this profession after years away–to be grateful and have a service orientation–instead of just getting through the damn day.  That’s what I did when I had time, too, and I’m learning it’s easier to be the person I want to be in this crazy environment.  As crazy as that sounds.

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