If there’s anything I’m an expert at it is being an expert at nothing. The older I get, the less I think I know what’s going on around me. The less I am 100% certain in anything; the less I strut around completely confident in my knowledge and abilities.
This isn’t to say I’m insecure – I am quite secure in myself as a person. It’s just that there’s so much in life that I’m still learning about and experiencing; opinions and states of mind are fluid to me – subject to change at any time. I know that the opinions that I have right now may be different in 10 years based on the path life has taken me on and actual knowledge accrued during that time frame. For example, when I was around 21 or 22, I did not understand what a transgender person was. I was pretty adamant that if you were born with male parts, you’re a boy. If you’re born with female parts, you’re a girl. All this because God meant for you to be what He created you to be and for someone to be physically a girl but identify as a boy was just wrong and against God and unnatural! I no longer feel this way because I learned differently over the years. (Sometimes I think getting out of a small town was the best thing for me – it is an eye opener to live among people who are very different than you are.)
I’d like to think I’m a great candidate for learning. Because I’m not so stead-fast in any one way or line of thinking, my mind is open to hearing another’s viewpoint and weighing it against what I know to be true to me. I couldn’t say all this two years ago, but the past two years have taught me a lot…mostly that I wasn’t as smart or savvy as I thought I was. I don’t always debate my points of view or my feelings because it’s not my job to defend myself or to try to bend someone else to my way of thinking. We all have our own paths to walk in life and if I tell someone that down this certain path, I ran into a pack of alligators and they choose to go that way…well, I hope you don’t run into those alligators. Or, if you do, you know how to charm them.
I’m sort of in this…scenario…with my family. My Dad seems overwhelmed and consumed by what’s going on with my Mom and, to me, his manic stress doesn’t help the situation. Any sort of calmness I try to bring to him over the phone – gentle reminders that there’s still so much life left to live and to not let her cancer, her eventual surgery or treatments, define his life; the importance of taking care of himself by eating properly, sleeping enough, doing what he can to stay mentally healthy – is met with resistance. Actually, I was told by him that he’s over 5 years old…which I know to mean that he isn’t very interested in any life-advice from his 35 year old daughter. It’s hard to be dismissed when you are trying to help someone touch back down to earth. It’s hard to feel dismissed because of one’s age or social statute within the family. My parents are more like to take advice from my older sister and strangers than me. I just go back to – well, hey? What do I really know anyway?
All I know is what information I’ve gathered from the eclectic life I’ve lived. I’ve been a severely depressed bar slag paralegal, a wannabe suburban housewife, a liar, a celebrity gossiper, a biker’s girl, a weed grower and dealer, an emotional punching bag for a couple of narcissistic jerk-offs (before I found my sense of self-worth), a childfree woman, a wife, a kickboxing instructor, a yoga instructor, a manager of a gym, a happy paralegal, a budding homesteader, a writer, a single woman hula-hooping alone in her apartment with Bishop Briggs’ “River” cranked too loud to where I am now…a suburban lesbian paralegal living in Niskayuna with two kids. I’ve been a woman with her shit together and a woman with her emotional shit everywhere. I’ve always had to work hard to be where I wanted or needed to be. I’ve always had to have a job ~ I’ve never had the luxury of fucking around because I have bills to pay and a credit score to keep over 800.
But what do I know? I’m not a world traveler, nor am I someone with a lot of schooling behind me. I haven’t lived in another country with less than what we have here. There are some demons I haven’t yet dealt with. I did hit what I think was my own personal rock bottom and that’s how I got to be where I am now. I’d hate to think that there could potentially be worse but if that’s what God has in store for me, that’s what He has in store for me. Nothing I can do about that. I’m just pretty comfortable saying “I don’t know” and pretty comfortable letting other people tell me that “they know”…when I really just feel that nobody knows a damned thing. We’re all just trying our best, whatever that happens to look like at the moment.