I’ve been telling myself this almost every day for the last year: “I’ve made it this far, and so I know I can make it from here. I don’t always know how but I know I will.” It’s kind of a play on a quote from a movie, ‘Clash of the Titans’ with Sam Worthington and yes, I know this movie is a cheese-popcorn fest but there was some good stuff in it. One line in particular: “You’ve brought us this far, let’s go the rest of the way.” – Me, Facebook, May 18, 2017
I wrote this at a time when I felt like my life was starting to skid off the road and down the side of a mountain. I’d just begun working on what would become my ‘Breaking Radio Silence’ project and was growing frustrated by the day that it wasn’t coming together as easily as I thought it would. Also, I was about a year out from quitting my last full-time day job and I was finishing up a contract job that I had learned how to hate and starting to drive for Uber. I just felt like I was driving without any direction in my life and I got scared. Luckily, that line from the movie ‘Clash of the Titans’ came to me and gave me something to hold on to.
But I hadn’t heard that line in my head in a long time. Instead, all I was hearing in my head was alternate plans I was coming up with if this or that fell through. I put myself on an anxiety-loop in my mind and it took me a few days to stop that loop by simply asking what the origins of it were. But I also had a few more thoughts come to my mind and that’s where this blog series came from.
My father had a saying he was fond of: “It’s hard to remember that your initial objective was to drain the swamp when you’re up to your ass in alligators.”
My default setting mentally and emotionally seems to want to stay in crisis-anxiety mode and I’m getting tired of that shit. I’m getting tired of every little thing sending me into a tizzy and I’m tired of scrambling to deal with that instead of just doing what I want to do. But how do you shift out of something that’s been with you for so long like this type of thinking has been with me?
It’s telling myself what I need to hear and not what my fight-or-flight response spews out.
Now I know some of these pieces of advice might not be too popular with some readers but I’m not referencing anyone specifically. And I’m not saying I’m perfect either. I’ve spewed shit when I shouldn’t have and have let my temper speak for me. But I’m human and I will fuck up just like everyone else. I think a lot of my anxiety-based thinking is this totally misplaced feeling that I have to strive for perfection in every waking moment of my life.
Every day that I wake up and see daylight as a victory. Or as my father also was fond of saying: “If you wake up on this side of the dirt, you’re doing just fine.” Why is there a mindset among assholes that every day is simply a drudge and that any expression of joy or ambition isn’t good enough? I say fuck that shit. Every day is a gift to borrow a cliché here. It’s a gift you get every day so be grateful for it and try not to fuck it up, or let someone else fuck it up.
I’m a freaking hermit hiding out alongside a freeway and you know what? I’m grateful for that. I honestly don’t think I’m fit to be around people on a regular basis so I’m going to stop whining to myself about that. I need this time to get my shit together once and for all because I’ve started writing my books and need to get my butt in gear on those, plus got other things I want to do and the time to do them in.
But this week I’ll be posting my own advice, and potential merchandise slogans, too. Because talking about my mental and emotional shit-storms isn’t for myself. My words and stories are for other people going through those storms or who have been through those storms and are feeling hollowed out and empty from that And that is something I have really needed to remind myself of, and also remember not to let go of again.