The state of doing is native to me; the state of being is unfamiliar. I want to change.
Several Christmases ago, my parents gave me and each of my siblings a photo album – each focused on a particular child. In my album, my father captioned a picture of me with “Will try anything”. His commentary about me makes me smile. I love that he saw me in that way. And he’s right – I have tried and will try almost anything – except jumping out of a perfectly good airplane. (Truth be told, I did consider it for about 90 seconds.)
If my mother had put a caption on one of my pictures, she would likely have written “more is not better”. (I think her oft-heard statement was a personal version of Coco Chanel’s “less is more”). And Mother was right, too. For example, she despaired of my learning to cook or sew as I would frequently add more than what was required. I frequently added extra width to a pattern (there was a gathered skirt in which I looked like an upside-down mushroom) and would adapt the recipe to add extra “pinches” of things like sugar and chocolate chips, and vanilla. I once attempted to improve an angel food cake by replacing the light icing with a heavy chocolate frosting (the cake was crushed under the weight, but it tasted good). I seem to remember a similar comment related to eye-liner, too.
I also recall the curious look on my piano teacher’s face when, at my 7th grade recital, I decided to add an impromptu glissando coda to Mr. Beethoven’s Fur Elise. (It just needed more.)
I try to do too much, too soon, too fast, too often – and that has been the story of my life.
Last week, in the course of about 2 and one-half hours, I’d made a mental list of several “really important” things that I felt would make good blog posts. As I sit here right now, I cannot even pull up one of those “important” happenings.
Today I received a heavy-duty package in the mail. It contains all the readings and the coursework for an upcoming workshop I registered for months ago. I expected to be excited; however, as I regard the pile of what was intended to be incredibly interesting material, I just feel tired.
It is wildly apparent (and has been for many, many years) that I do not know what “enough” means. Let’s discuss.