I had a friend in town a few days ago and he asked me a question out of a nowhere. He asked me, as he was pulling our Publix sandwiches out of the bag, if there was a friend we wouldn’t want to be. I mean who does that? Isn’t the standard who would you want to be? And then he had the nerve to not like my answer. I’m sorry I didn’t live up to your expectations. I mean jeez it’s my life.
The friend is was expecting me to never choose was a friend he knew I was close with. A capable, hard working, organized always been an adult type of friend. Yes, I definitely admire her. Hell, I would beg a G-d for a scrap of the resolution and productivity she can muster on a daily basis. I mean she has capitalized and re-institutionalized the meaning of being a capable independent woman…. but admiration of skills aside that doesn’t mean I want to suddenly have her life.
I mean first of all ever person has their own challenges. A part of me believes you get the challenges you are able to overcome. Which means if I had her challenges I would be starting off in an even worse place then I am now.
Secondly, and probably the most honest reason, there is a fundamental difference between the two of us. She is the capable, resolved, hard working person who can compartmentalize on a whole nother level. I am the emotional, guilt ridden, cynical realist, that doesn’t move on from things and tends to wallow too much. There’s a silver lining about me though, I think. My problems, or these sort of problems, tend to come from being self aware (or overly self aware) of your body, thoughts, and emotional states. You basically skipped almost all of Maslow’s triangle and achieved the top block. When you live as that sort of person, since from as far back as you can remember, living any other way sounds a bit…harsh? I can’t imagine navigating the world not perfectly aware of what I’m feeling in every moment. Even if sometimes I wish I was a numb dead fish on a like a sea bank somewhere.
I have definitely been uncomfortable and critical of who I am. SO MANY TIMES. I still haven’t gotten over the wallflower description. “Oh, you know. You are like that wallflower who successfully blends when she forgets she is trying to blend, BUT HEY once you’re noticed man you just can’t look away from you.” …. “Uh, thanks, I guess.”.. “No problem, man. Just thought you should know. You really stand out when you are trying to blend in.”… Yea, I am not over that conversation. Or constantly being called the quirky one.
Still, I think it is okay to be your own person with your own problems. Even if you want to still admire another person. People shouldn’t ask you who do you not want to be, or who would you want to be. I think a better question is who are you going to be. It’s not about anything else, but the ideals you personally want to achieve.