Wake up at 4:20am; gym, shower, eat breakfast, hang laundry, wake boyfriend, catch train, nap on train, make social media posts for business pages, pay electricity bill, go to work for 8 hours, catch train home, read novel, text friends for dinner catch up, send message to ex-colleagues about that dinner you were supposed to organise two months ago, walk home, make dinner, wash dishes, fold laundry, wash hair, do vocal warm-ups & learn new songs for singing gig next week, write blog, email club owners about gigs, spray exit mould in shower, moisturise, kiss boyfriend good night. Go to bed.
Damn. Can’t sleep.
This is my typical day. This is probably pretty similar to your typical day, with a few substitutions.
Boyfriend’s day goes a little something like this: eat, work, gym, play Fortnite. Please God, let me have a penis in my next life.
I don’t deserve pity, I agree, it’s all self-inflicted. I could choose not to do so much. At least once a week mum tells me; “Stephanie, stop doing so much! Just enjoy life.” I can’t mum, there’s no time! We’re in the midst of a gender shift where women are in their element. I flick through the Sunday paper and find articles of female entrepreneurs telling me how I can achieve my dreams, just like they did. We used to be encouraged/programmed/brainwashed (you say potato) to marry someone on a stable income (or filthy rich). Now, we’re being told we can create our own riches and achieve business and personal goals, from real-life women who have done the same.
The problem we’re all having with trying to create a noteworthy life, is that we’re not leaving enough time to live it.
What terrifies me, is that I don’t even have kids yet. How do people with kids do it?!!! I guess that’s why most new parents I know are in zombie mode. Just pushing through with a hell of a lot of eye cream and caffeine.
At night, my mind is occupied with ticking off today’s To-do List and writing tomorrow’s, that by the time I get to bed; I find it hard to shut my mind down enough for sleep. My boyfriend constantly bear-hugs me in the kitchen whilst pleading with my brain to stop planning and over-thinking (don’t tell him that I actually scheduled our sex-life into my list one day). In my defence, he and many other people in my life depend on me to organise many aspects of our lives. If I don’t plan and over think, very little would get done in our home, I assure you. In fact, my friend Alexis articulates it much better, when I send texts reminding everyone of what time to leave work to be at dinner on time and which transportation would be faster; “Bruno, what would we do without you?”
I have two modes; work like a ravenous beast until I feel a sense of accomplishment, or collapse on my bed and threaten to run away and become a waitress in a country town, spending most of my days lying on the grass, making shapes out of clouds and singing Stevie Nicks songs (if you can’t give me penis in my next life God, can I be a joint-smoking hippie? Or a hang-ten surfie? Ooh ooh and long, tanned legs please!)
I am all kinds of tired lately. Things are going to have to change. I harp on about balance a hell of a lot, and I always start with the best intentions but soon enough, I’m back where I started.
I ponder now of the days in my teens I wished away; waiting to be older, to have freedom from rules and curfews and homework. What I wouldn’t give to be lying on my single bed in my parents’ home, letting Tori Amos’ ethereal vocals wash over my melancholy soul, dreaming about boys under my Dawson’s Creek posters. “We’ll I’m not seventeen but I’ve cuts on my knees. Falling down as the winter takes one more cherry tree.”
My best friend Chantelle was killed at the age of 23 by a hit and run driver. As we planted some of her ashes under a tree in her dad’s front yard on what would have been her 25th birthday, Jean-Pierre turned to me and said; “she always wanted to be 25. Even as a child, she wished she could just hurry up and get to 25.” Oh, how I wish she didn’t wish any of it away.
I’ve made so many wonderful friends along the way but there’s a reason the high school friends have a hold on me. Even the dear old friends I don’t see regularly anymore like my beautiful friend Liz. We grew, and her path went one way and mine went another, but her words pop into my mind more than she realises. Like the time we had a fight about…actually I can’t recall at all what it was about, but I do remember that she appeared on my doorstep with a copy of Anne Rice’s ‘The Vampire Lestat’ and a note that read “Stiffy, don’t be angry. Life’s too short for angry”. She may have been my shortest friend, but she was by far the wisest.
These friendships are forged during such formative years. We held hands and crossed the equator from child to adult. I faltered along the way. I continue to falter at times. But I always feel those familiar hands at my back. And that’s all I need to know.
Your teens are like 5pm on a Friday; you’re relaxed, ready to party and in no rush because there’s still so much time ahead of you. Lately, I feel perpetually stuck at 8pm Sunday; in a frantic rush to get things done, haunted by that niggling feeling that the fun is all over and not within reach for a long time.
I never understood why Adam Sandler kept pressing fast forward on his universal remote in Click. I would much rather be Piper Halliwell and pause the world whenever I need. Just to catch my breath.
I’m of the belief that living in the past can bring depression and living in the future can create anxiety. The present moment is all that we do indeed have, and the key to a peaceful existence. But just for today, I’m going to close my eyes, allow my soul to drift back to a much younger version of myself and indulge in a little selfish teen-angst. Just for today. Now where did I put my Walkman and belly-button ring?
I didn’t participate in Dry July but I’m proposing a month free of Social Media in an attempt to disconnect from everyone else’s moments and create my own. I dub thee; Angst-free August. I’m predicting a result of either having so much free time that I finish writing my novel (did you see Bradley Cooper in Limitless?) Or becoming so Zen that the Dalai Lama has me on speed-dial (he probably doesn’t have a phone, so it may be a telepathic speed-dial).
Catch you in the Spring x