Monday, August 27, 2012

Confused Desires

I've been a mess lately.

It's not necessarily in a bad way.

I'm not depressed.

I'm slightly anxious. But, for me, that's par for the course.

I just have these ideas and desires. My head is spinning with confusion.  

I'm wanting to do various things, but I get the idea they're probably not the type of things I should do.

The other day Tim announced that he thinks someday we should go live in another country. We talked about it before, of course.  But it was kind of taken off the table...mostly because Jack has such a huge attachment to our Texas home and family.

Things might be different when he's a teenager, though.  Or if not then, perhaps when he's a young adult.  

The cool thing, though, is when Tim mentioned it, Jack brought up Australia, even before I did. Still though, he wasn't keen on leaving Texas.  

I assured him it wouldn't happen for a long time.

Then I did some googling to find a place I had seen before.

Crap.  I'm searching again so I can post a link on my blog. I can't find it. It's like it vanished off the face off the earth.

Anyway, it was a wildlife rescue place in Western Australia. It was in a very rural area— no nearby towns.

In some ways it looks extremely appealing to me.

You get to take care of kangaroos.

You feed them.

You help them poop.

You clean up their poop.

They have pictures of people in a living room and wallabies are hanging around with them.

It's awesome.

But the accommodations are quite rough.

There's no regular toilet.

They have only a drop toilet.

I'm so dependent on modern water-wasting plumbing.

It's been YEARS since I've used one of those portable toilet things. I'm totally grossed out by them.   If I used one, I'd want to rush and take a shower.

If I used a drop toilet, I'd want to take a shower afterwards.  I pee like every hour.  That's a lot of showers. And this kangaroo place is big on water conservation.

It wouldn't be a good fit.

But then there's this part of me that's saying I should get over it.  I should be brave. When Jack turns the required age of 18, we should say goodbye to our life of luxury and take the plunge.  

I have to wonder, though.

Why should I do it?

Is it about spending time with kangaroos?

I do like animals. But do I like them that much?

Is my desire to bond with marsupials stronger than my desire to avoid gross toilets?

Or am I doing it to prove something?

If I'm doing it to prove something, who am I performing for?

Myself?  Do I want to prove to myself that I can be brave about the toilet thing? Do I want to prove to myself that I can move beyond my pampered existence.  

Or am I doing it to impress others?

Does this go back to my need to make my mommy and daddy proud of me?   

Reading about the animal farm led me to this website that's pretty cool. It's called the Help Exchange.  They list people who want volunteers to help them at their farm and home.

I think that would be fun for Tim, Jack, and me.  The problem is I don't know what I can offer. Most people seem to want helpers who are good with home repair type stuff and gardening.

I'm not good at any of those.

I'm fairly good at dusting. I haven't seen anyone looking for that.

I have mediocre vacuuming skills.

I could perhaps get better with practice...if I find someone looking for that skill.  

I saw a few listings asking for cooks. Tim could do that.

But I don't want to be the tag-a-long wife. I'd want to contribute too.

There is one thing that people occasionally list that I might be okay at. Childcare.  

That might work. It might be fun.

So I'm keeping that site as a maybe.

Maybe the three of us will do it together.  Some families want three or more volunteers.

Or maybe Jack will want to go off on his own adventure...without us.   Tim and I can do it together.

Or maybe I'd do it alone.

I want to travel.

I want to do something exciting.

I want to feel independent.

Although then there was another day last week where I thought maybe I'd want to give up the traveling plan and instead have tons of pets. I could have lots of cats or lots of birds.  I love cats. I love birds.

We've declared we're going to stop getting cats after Max dies, and that suddenly made me sad.

But then I thought of Mu Shu getting old and getting sick. I thought of him dying. I hate that part of it all.  It's sad. It's stressful.  I hate the worrying. I hate the decisions that have to be made.

With that in mind, I threw the pet plan out the window. I was back to the traveling plans.  

I'm pretty sure the drop toilet kangaroo place won't work for me. But the volunteer exchange thing might.  

The other thing I thought of is doing a long walk.

That's one I'm seriously considering.

The idea is very attractive to me.

I'd carry one of those backpacks and just walk and walk.

I wouldn't be too rough on myself.

I'd stay at places that have modern plumbing.

Maybe I'd walk with Tim or a friend. Maybe one of my sisters?

I wouldn't mind walking alone, though. It might be kind of nice.

I'd love to walk with Jack, but at this point it's hard to imagine him wanting to do that. He's not a big fan of walking.

So yeah.  I've been trying to figure out my future. It's stressful, but probably less stressful than worrying about Jack's future.

Sometimes I want him to be extremely successful.  Why?  The main reason is so I can prove to my parents that I succeeded in parenting. But then the other day I thought, none of their three daughters became extremely successful. If that's the standard we're trying to achieve, they totally failed.   

Maybe in reality, though, their biggest parenting failure was creating someone so desperate to impress them and so desperate to succeed.

If I can get over that, then maybe I will have won a major success for all of us.   

I want to stop wanting to be some huge success.

At Jack's birthday party, my friend talked about her writing.

I asked her if she's going to publish it online. She said no. She's just doing it for herself.

In the past, I wouldn't have understood the appeal. But I was suddenly jealous of her.   I wanted to write something for me...something just for fun.  I wanted to create my own fictional world just for myself.  

I started today and obsessively worked on it.  I made up the characters and had a great time doing that. I used Melbourne suburbs for some of the surnames.

Then I started writing it, and it was less fun.

I had too many characters. It was confusing.

I also realized I didn't really like writing just for myself.

I no longer feel I must write a best seller, but I would like at least one person to read and enjoy it.

That would be impossible, though. There's no way anyone could follow all the characters.

Could I cut out some of the characters?

No, not really.  It wouldn't make sense for the situation of the story.

Oh well.

If I'm honest with myself, I didn't go into the project thinking I'd just write for myself and that would be that.  I went into it with the quiet secret fantasy that yes, I'd write it for myself.  In the beginning at least.  Then I'd go back and read it.  I'd find it to be wonderful. I'd publish it, and other people would agree with me about it being wonderful.

I ended up deleting the project.

I didn't want it on my computer, because then I'd be all stressed and torn. Should I keep writing it?  Should I quit?  I'll quit. No, I'll keep writing it.  No, I'll quit.   

I felt if I kept it on my computer it would haunt me.  

I didn't want to be haunted.

I'd rather spend my time not being haunted and doing other things.    

If I want to play in an imaginary world of my creation, I can play Minecraft.

And what I like even more than that is spending time in other people's fictional worlds.  

For the most part my life is made up of mothering, blogging, reading, doing housework, watching TV/videos and exercising. Then you throw in some traveling here and there.   

Is that enough?

Or do I need to do something big and exciting?

Do I need to do something that gives me a chance of being extremely successful?

Do I need to do something huge that changes the world? 

Do I need to get over my attachment to modern plumbing?

Do I need to continue to try to impress people? 

Or can I just learn to be satisfied with my life?  

Am I okay the way I am, or do I need to be something more?