i’ve put words to something over the last few days, the last few weeks, something i’ve known for a long time but just haven’t articulated:
everybody’s got my back.
i work with incredibly devoted, competent, well-intentioned, exceptionally brilliant people who care about the same things i do, whose priorities and motivations are completely above-board and entirely aligned.
i have a loving boyfriend who appreciates my vocabulary as much as (well, probably more than) he appreciates my pretty underwear, who is an equally good partner at cranium and beer pong (even though, frankly, i am way better at spelling backwards than i am at throwing a ping-pong ball into a solo cup of bud light), who accompanies me to the symphony and wipes applesauce off my chin when i’m anesthetized and can’t feed myself properly.
i have friends all over the country, all over the world, who would, at a moment’s notice, pull out all the stops for me if i needed it.
i have a slew of sisters who are all incredibly different and equally supportive in entirely unique ways, who love me and are rooting for me and in whose footsteps i’m proud to follow.
and i have wonderful parents who are surprised and amused, i think, by all my crazy adventures, and who are exceptionally generous, intelligent, kind people.
i am the luckiest girl in the world.
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my last few posts read as a little testy. lately, it seems, i only have something to say when i’m pissed off.
this is not at all an accurate reflection of me. ask anyone: i have something to say ALL the time.
so i’ll say some things. in no particular order, except the order assigned by my own, hyperassociative mind. i’d like this to be a little more representative of my train of thought.
- with a little help, i recently discovered paddington bear. as someone who adored a.a. milne’s winnie-the-pooh books (and hates the commercialized, squeaky-voiced version of them), i couldn’t believe i hadn’t met this raincoated, courteous gentlebear before. i have some catching up to do.
- i read about half of “american gods” by neil gaiman while doing laundry at dan’s house a couple weeks ago. i loved it, but it threw me into a complete funk, and i’ve been a little afraid to re-approach it. (for similar reasons, i watched only comedies for most of college because i thought it was plausible that with the slightest inducement, i’d enter another period of depression. imagine my relief to come through unscathed and now have a very happy life, such that i can once again tolerate sad movies from time to time.)
- i love being the person other people come to for help. i crave it. sometimes i want to remind people, in alanis fashion, “i am not the doctor,” but the truth is, i can’t give it up.
- it is really impressive, and kind of appalling, how much i know about the x-files. getting into something as a pre-teen is a good way to completely immerse yourself in it. on the one hand, i wish it had been something useful, like improving my french, or fixing cars, or learning to play the piano. on the other hand, i suppose it’s a good thing i didn’t develop an interest in heroin.
- most of the time i don’t notice, but sometimes i have pangs of dismay about my poor right hand. it’s functional, but as an indoor kid, i thrive on my fine motor skills. painting, drawing, jewelry. these all require tendons that aren’t bound up in fascia and nerves that aren’t damaged. i was a struck by this because a friend expressed surprise the other day when he realized i can draw. it used to be one of those things that everyone knew about me, because i did it all the time.
- it seems just yesterday that i was running out of light dresses to wear to work. i wore my winter boots yesterday. that was a wake-up call.
- i’m extremely fortunate. i think about this a lot (more than it seems, i guess, with all the bitching that’s been going on on this blog lately). and often i think of it from a global standpoint — “this is a first-world problem,” i’ll remind myself whenever excel crashes or i miss the train. but even from the standpoint of the people in my own life, i am really damn content. it’s a nice position to be in.
- i miss college much less than i thought i would.
- i don’t enjoy teaching feminism 101. sometimes i wish everyone got the education i got at a women’s college.
- my organization has furnished me with some great mentors, including women who make me incredibly proud to be a woman. the first mentor i had here was excited for me when i told her i was being allocated to this project, whose director is female. “there’s just something different about being managed by a woman,” she said, in that way women have — that voice that says, you understand, because we all understand. my boss today gave me a little advice that i really appreciated, informed by her own experiences. it was in that very same voice. it’s refreshing to have that kind of immediate understanding and empathy. i suspect that it is unique to having the particular experience of belonging to a society that isn’t quite ready for you, no matter how competent you are. i’m sure there are men who experience this, too, but i suspect that white, cisgendered, majority-religion, heterosexual, economically-privileged, etc. men do not. and even if they’re winning the game in plenty of other ways, it makes me positively gleeful that they don’t know that kind of support.
- i drink altogether too much tea.
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