Friday, May 15, 2009

An Exercise in Futility

Must buckle down. Must your get ass in gear. Must find some direction.

Maybe later.

Not getting any younger. Life's not getting any easier. The world is passing you by. Everyone is moving full speed ahead while you stand there, contemplating the next course of action.

So what?

It would be healthy if you were standing still for the right reasons. But are you sure you aren't just letting your fear of screwing up your life keep you from going after what you really want?

But isn't that the problem? I don't even know what I really want. How I can I go after something if I don't know what to go after?

You're just making excuses not to apply yourself again. What are you afraid of?

What about getting something then realizing that it's not what I wanted after all?

You're hopeless! I give up!

That, at least, is something we agree on. I think it may be time to look for a therapist...

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Wednesday, May 13, 2009


My year here has gone by with astonishing speed. I've made no secret of the fact that the time I've spent here has been nothing short of idyllic. Despite working a steady job and finally getting a life, my time here has been something of a vacation.

In this meantime, I've been able to hold off making some major decisions. I've been able to settle into life without a plan, without a map, and no clear vision of what I will be doing, say, 5 years from now. It's all still an absolute blank.

Is it all the open-endedness that is making me suddenly feel very antsy? Or is it because I am more of a free spirit than I actually thought and that the possibilities are the driving force behind my vague restlessness?

It's crazy. It's radical. It may be the by-product of an insanity resulting from suddenly being lost after being stuck on a plan for most of my life. At an age when I should be thinking about settling down, acquiring assets, making a family... I'm having fantasies about leaving medicine and working as a barista as I move from one country to another, seeing the world one city at a time.

Okay, maybe that's a little bit extreme... but you guys sort of get the picture.

I'd been conditioned to have very definite views on where I would be at this particular point in my life... done with my schooling and on the way to being established in my career; married to a stable, reliable guy; getting started on the 2.5 kids - pretty much on the way to living a comfortable, if ordinary, happily ever after. I'd always fancied myself as a home-and-hearth type of person, and I know I'm the kind of person who will always need to put down roots. I won't lie that I don't want all of the above someday - because I do. But...

Maybe not just yet.

I recently had lunch with a younger but wiser friend of mine - who has lived a much more interesting life than I have even if I have almost a decade of living over him. This is one of the perks of living in a land where people are all raised to indulge their wanderlust. Ozzies, I've found, are born nomads. Maybe it's because they have so much space to roam in.

There I was, whinging about how lucky he was that he could just up and go wherever he wanted on a whim, when he cut me off with a very succint, "And who told you that you couldn't?"

I started to give him a list. Society, family, my own need for security, blah, blah, blah... to which he countered, "But all of that is in your mind. Can't you do what you want and still be living up to people's expectations?"

Tantalizing thoughts.

His last piece of advice to address my restlessness? "Maybe it's just time for you to move again."

The roads are open, the possibilities - while not endless - do exist.
This is not me. I hate change. I don't want to go to another city and start over... do I?
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Saturday, May 09, 2009


Part of the Bibbulmun Track going through Pemberton's karri forest, Pemberton WA.
Taken with my Nikon D40.

I got this off a Facebook tag that one of my friends completed. Since I've always loved those sentence completion psych evaluations, it was too good to resist.

But apart from being such a good writing prompt (yes, I am still smack dab in the middle of writer's block), I like its congruence with my current thoughts as I look back on this past year - and look forward to growing another year older, if not much wiser.

1. I've come to realize that my hands... do good work.

2. I've come to realize that my job... is something that I actually enjoy most days despite my protests to the contrary.

3. I've come to realize that when I'm driving... I am comfortable with not really knowing exactly where I'm going and enjoy the journey wherever it takes me - even if I get lost every now and then.

4. I've come to realize that I need... to be more confident in myself about what I can do and what I can offer and be proud of how far I've come - and be less reliant on the approval and opinion of others.

5. I've come to realize that I've lost... some tinting off my rose-colored glasses.

6. I've come to realize that I hate it when... people don't do what they say they're going to do when they say they're going to do it.

7. I've come to realize that the person/people I like... give me a different perspective of life as I know it.

8. I've come to realize that money... makes it easier for a doctor in training not to feel pressured about getting to the next level of training.

9. I've come to realize that people... respond well to being wished a good day, even by a complete stranger.

10. I've come to realize that I'll always be... a person who will value having roots.

12. I've come to realize that my mom... does the best she can.

13. I've come to realize that my cell phone... is often better off inside my locker the whole day.

14. I came to realize when I woke up this morning... that I'd have another sleepless night tonight. Arrrgh, night shifts!

15. I came to realise last night before I went to sleep that... I am causing my muscles to tighten up by sleeping on the office chairs.

16. I've come to realize that right now I am thinking about... whether or not I'm ready to move on to the next level - and another place - and I'm terrified.

17. I've come to realize that my dad... means well but worries too much.

18. I've come to realize that when I get on Facebook... it closes the distance between me and my friends.

19. I've come to realize that today... I've put off doing things that needed doing - again.

20. I've come to realize that tonight... I will be working again.

21. I've come to realize that tomorrow... is overbooked with friend-time after having days upon days to myself this past week.

22. I've come to realize that I really want to... explore the possibilities for a while longer.

23. I've come to realize that life... is much richer when you go at it full on.

24. I've come to realize that this weekend... is such a gift of fine weather on what should be the middle of fall. Yes, my beaches beckon!

25. I've come to realize that (my ex) all my "never was-es"... was just Fate's way of leading me here.

26. I've realized the best music to listen to when I am upset... would be something I can sing to.

27. I've come to realize that my friends... the real ones, will always be my friends.

28. I've come to realize that the past year... has seen my life open up in ways I never imagined.

29. I've come to realize that the last person I kissed... sadly, I probably won't get to kiss again.

30. I've come to realize that when people walk out of my life... they leave a space that no one else will ever be able to fill.

31. I've come to realize that my most memorable age was when I was... this year. :)

32. I've come to realize I will not trade... financial security for happiness.

33. I've come to realize that I like... being me.

34. I've come to realize that I cannot leave home without... a sense of adventure and a sense of humor.

35. I've come to realize that the sports I like... I have to completely zone in to - and lets me forget everything else going on in my life while I'm doing them.

36. I've come to realize that the top three things I find attractive are...
someone with an insight born of having lived life to the full and appreciating all that he's experienced so far, a sense of humour, and a positive outlook.

37. I've come to realize that ... even at my age, I'm young - and life has really just begun.

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Tuesday, May 05, 2009

I Don't Feel Like Dancing...

For most of this year, I've felt positive, energized, and empowered.

Today just hasn't been one of those days.

I should be thankful that my city by the water has made it so easy to embrace solitude. It's hard to feel lonely alone when surrounded by reminders of how beautiful the world actually is. I get worried sometimes that being here has made it so frighteningly easy to be content in my own company.

But there are days when even being close to my beloved ocean, running by the river, or lying on the grass in one of Perth's myriad open spaces staring at the bright blue sky all fail to soothe.

And those times I just feel alone - and wonder what the hell I'm doing here.

Middleton Beach, Albany early on an overcast morning, taken with my Nikon D40

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