90s Angry Girl turned into Ryan Reynolds ex-girlfriend and recent Canadian Hall of Famer: Alanis Morissette.
So for the last two nights, I keep waking up freaking out about this blog. I am prone to perfectionistic tendencies, which is the major reason why I never wanted to write about things so personal and important to me before. No one is going to care what I write about the lastest crappy ensemble movie to hit theaters or John Mayer’s lastest album, but comment on racial, gender and religious issues and the writer comes into question. And I, am not perfect, especially not compared to the Mormon perfection standard. I dont feel a listing of my personal sins is necessary, lets just say Ive fallen off the wagon in minor and major ways. I think what makes me Mormon despite those mistakes is that I usually try to get back on and that I show others the same forgiveness I try to show myself.
I spent a good portion of my life living by shoulds, because I was scared to death no one would love me if I didnt follow all of their rules. By no one, I literally mean no one. No friends, no family, nada. The thing is people have so many rules. My mother wanted straight A’s, my PE teacher for me to run that stupid mile each week faster, my friends to stop studying and play, my teachers to work harder on their assignments, my volleyball coach to come to practice during finals week, and blah blah blah. I spent so much time trying to figure out what I should do, that I literally had no idea what I wanted to do. Even those few times back then when I knew what I wanted to do – like go to school in NYC rather than a suburban college town, I felt God wanting me to do the latter, and I should follow him, right? Well as far as I can tell, God is the only person on that list who I should (hah!) consider when I make choices and even then, Im still a bit bitter (damn you Utah!).
Ive been slowly teaching myself to acknowledge my own wants. If Im exhausted and want to go home, but am worried about keeping my friend if I go home instead of go out with them, well I try to come up with a compromise that doesnt compromise me. Im trying to state my preferences more, which has resulted in quite a few people calling me a bitch, but the truth is I havent lost anyone yet. Now Im practicing asking for things that I wouldve been scared to rock the boat on before – like the emergency exit row on the plane. Guess what happens? Im polite, no one cares, and so far Ive always gotten get the seat!
This blog is me making another conscious effort to be whole. In the words of C.S. Lewis,
“If all experienced God in the same way and returned Him an identical worship, the song of the Church triumphant would have no symphony, it would be played like an orchestra in which all instruments played the same note.”
Im not as interested any more in behaving like a Middle C, when I am clearly like an A Sharp. Ive made enough decisions thinking about just me and God’s opinions that have been considered really random by all outside observers, and yet turned out truly awesome for me, so I can take the hit. But yes, Im afraid that someone will stumble upon this and say, but she doesnt go to church regularly, or she cant get anyone to marry her, or some variation of, “But did you hear about that thing she did that one time?” and make me feel small and awful for trying to stand. And worse yet, that those of you who are reading this with the growing inclination to find or support your own note will think, “The price she paid was much too high to take that risk.” I am choosing to believe I can handle a few sleepless nights. What will you choose?