Is it that we start retrospecting on the year past: our accomplishments, our failures...? I don't know about you, but all the little things that bothered me all year, all my imperfections, all disappointments grow into immeasurable proportions and blow up in my face. Suddenly, I realize that I have no accomplishments to speak of, I've achieved nothing; I've only angered and annoyed people, pushed family and friends away with my incessant perfectionist comments, smug opinions, and impeccable taste. What I've lost in friends, I gained in weight. I smile and hold the door for people I can't stand and show the door to the people I love. I have pretended to be a tower of strength, a model of an enlightened human being, a brilliant, shiny success, when really all this time I've been secretly dealing with low-spirits and perfect lack of confidence. What a sham!
The good news is that now that I have recognized the symptoms and identified the malady, I can work on an effective treatment. The first small accomplishment: first person singular. Dispensing with the impersonal second person, first person plural, or--worse yet--third person narrative means I am ready to own up to my issued. They belong to me! The "I" makes them mine!
Next, I need to think positive: pink frosting, sugar canes, and marshmallow pies. What have I accomplished? I have
- come to important realizations (ie, that I am my worst enemy, that there is no one in the department interested in working with my thesis, that people barely tolerate me but that I need them more than I would like to admit, that despite my newly-found love of mankind I don't like them enough to enjoy teaching, that I am overeducated as it is and should quit before I go completely gray and the economy worsens even more so that the only jobs available would be for flipping burgers at the neighborhood fast-food joint... oh, wait! I was supposed to be positive! Darn! It's more difficult than I thought. I am Eeyore!);
- made important decisions (ie, to quit grad school and get a real job for a change because any further investment in education will be detrimental to my sanity, my family, my "career" goals, and to my bank account);
- overcome my fear of commitment (ie. bought a beautiful house in a quiet neighborhood and a good school district so my child can attend a decent public school, and finally married the man I live with, climb with, ski with, and tolerate... ok, fine! Love! There! I said it!);
- improved my quality of life (ie. read books I actually enjoyed reading, unleashed my creativity in art, design, interior design, and cooking);
- climbed better and harder ('nough said!)...