Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Psome pself psycho analysis

Sometimes I wonder how I come across on this blog. For instance, on my post about feeling weird, did I sound like I am not grateful to stay home or that I don't love being with my kids all day? Because I am grateful to be able to spend all day with my girls. The problem with e-relationships is that they provide such an incomplete picture of someone.

By nature, I am critical. I don't mean judgmental, though sometimes I am that, too. I mean that I look for what needs to be fixed or corrected. For instance, if I got such a low score as a 96% on a test (as if!), I would review the entire thing to find the 4% I didn't get right. Then I would carefully study that material so that I would really understand it.

I asked Ryan if he would describe me as critical but fair, and he said I am better described as fair but competitive with myself. I try to find out how to be better, and that usually means I think about what isn't great and come up with a plan to make it great.

So, in the case of giving up my career to stay home with kids, I acknowledge that that decision was awful in some ways and then figure out how to maintain all the good things about teaching while staying home. That is a reason I blog, started a book club, and keep in touch with former students.

Anyway, this all came up because of the anniversary of 9/11. I was telling Ryan how odd it was that my dad would call me on that morning ten years ago to tell me about the World Trade Centers. Not having kids of my own yet, I couldn't understand why Dad felt it important to call me. Couldn't I have just heard about it on the news? But now that I have kids, I know why he called. When I am scared or stressed or feeling out of sorts, I want to be with my children. I want to know they are okay, and then I am okay.

We then started talking about how else we are different now that we are older and have had different life experiences. I said that I have probably become even more competitive, to use Ryan's word, and spend more time figuring out how to squeeze more quality out of life.

Our time is so short, you know? We don't have time to drift through life unaware of ourselves, of how we come across, or of how we make people feel. But we also can't spend our days regretting our previous days.

I know I have blind spots. I know there are areas of my life that need improvement. I know I am failing my girls in some ways. But that's the beauty of relationships, right? I want those close to me to hold me accountable, to tell me when I am being narcissistic, elitist, and difficult.

I know what my life is supposed to look like: the Bible makes that clear. The Beatitudes, Proverbs 31, and the fruit of the Spirit all give me concrete characteristics to strive for. The Spirit makes us more holy, more intentional, more of a "pleasing aroma" to God.

Regret is a waste of time, but reflection can make life richer. Growing older is fascinating, and growing older surrounded by people who love you? It's awesome and humbling and rewarding and painful. But mainly awesome.

1 comment:

  1. I always worry about how I come across to others - and then when I look back on a conversation I'm like, "Really?! THAT was what I said? I don't even feel THAT way. Great... they're going to think I'm a complete mess, or worse." And then I stress about it. Ugh... hate that.

    For what it's worth, I think your a breath of fresh air and I truly enjoy shootin the poop with you :)