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Thursday, March 31, 2011

COMMITMENT

COMMIT - [kuh-mit]
verb, com-mit-ted, com-mit-ting
to bind or obligate, as by pledge or assurance; pledge: to commit oneself to a promise; to be committed to a course of action.
 
I'm beginning to think people don't know or understand the meaning to that word.  Maybe I'm wrong, maybe they do understand and they just don't care.
 
I was always taught to treat people the way I want to be treated but I've always wanted people to know that I want to be treated the way I treat them yet they don't get it.  So why am I bothering?
 
When you make a commitment to someone, no matter how big or how small, in my opinion, you need to keep that commitment.  Now, I realize that sometimes things, beyond our control, come up and no matter how much you'd like to do what you promised, it's just not possible.  Those situations are not what I'm referring to here.
 
Maybe I shouldn't take it so personally but it pisses me off and honestly, it deeply hurts my feelings.  How hard is it to do what you said you'd do?  If you don't want to do it then when originally asked say "NO".  That concept escapes me too.  People have actually said to me "you're so hard to say no to".  ARE YOU KIDDING ME?  Let me lay this out for you, using that logic.  ***please note I refrained from calling anyone Sparky*** :)
 
I ask you to do something (don't care what it is for this example) and you don't really want to do it but you feel like I'm so hard to say no to so you say yes, even though you don't want to do it.  So, I make my plans accordingly and move forward with my life.  Time gets closer to you doing what I asked you to do and now you say you can't.  Two things happen in that moment, first and foremost......You just said NO to me (wasn't impossible huh?) and second, now I'm screwed because I stopped looking for someone to do it since you said you would so now I'm back to square one except it's probably day of or day before you were going to do whatever I asked of you and so usually I have to cancel my plans or change them.  In case you hadn't noticed......this is what I was trying to avoid in the first place.
 
What am I missing here?  Why do people do this?  All it takes is for someone to leave you high and dry, just once and you should go out of your way not to do the same to other people.  Is that logic too basic?  Are people not capable of this?
 
Now, before I end this blog let me point out something.  Not everyone in my life is this way.  That's right, I'm not saying every person I know doesn't keep their commitments to me (or others) but there are several who don't.
To those who do, please know, I love and adore that personality trait in you!  :) 

Monday, March 28, 2011

Relocating

Friendships when you relocate can be difficult.

Seven years ago I moved from Kansas City to New York City.  Big move when you just compare the cities but there's so much more to things when you relocate.  Start with the basics, you have to learn where things are, how to get around, where the best local places are, what places you should avoid, a new job, a new house.......I could go on and on but I think you get the idea.

Friendships..............well, that's a different story.  My friendships in Kansas City have changed, which is to be expected.  Yet it's harder to meet people in NY because I'm no longer in school and for the last five years I've worked from home.  I wasn't anticipating that.

When I moved I started this transformation that I guess I expected yet was surprised by it.  I know that doesn't make much sense but I'm sure you can understand.  I knew that certain things would change because of my new surroundings but I thought who I "was" would stay the same.   WRONG!  My moral compass still points in the same direction and I still have the same values but in a city that moves fast I lost what little patience I did have.  Yet, because there are so many more people and we don't all speak the same language I've learned to have more patience with people individually.  Driving.......well, Kansas City is the Road Rage Capital of the World and in NY it's just about being aggressive.  Here, people want to get where they're going and if you pissed them off they'd just like to get in front and be done with you but in Kansas City they want to get in front and then slow down and piss you off in the same way you pissed them off.

I still want the same things out of my friendships but it's different and after a lot of soul searching I think I finally figured it out.
My Kansas City Friends.......
Some of my friendships couldn't handle the distance.  Even someone that I thought would be standing by my death bed; unfortunately the friendship was split by the miles between us.
Some of my friendships have maintained and there have been visits between both parties and they're solid friendships.
Some of my friendships were people that I knew but weren't too close with and now, even though we're 1200 miles apart we've found a new connection and are closer than ever.
Lastly, some of my friendships started after I moved and even though we're so far apart we've built a strong bond that I do believe will stand the test of time.

That brings me to my New York friends........
I don't have as many categories for them.  lol
The first difference in meeting people here is that I'm not from here so I think differently about things, even simple things like "food", or it could be religious, ethnic or sexual differences.  Those differences were things that I thought would be no big deal but boy was I wrong.  Plus, life is very different for me now (as it is for everyone) I'm no longer in school or living in my first apartment where everyone came over weekly for a Game Night.  Now we're all adults, with Partners, JOBs, Children and bills.  A lot of people's friendships change just by the simple act of growing up but when you compound that with changing cities it's even more of a change.  You learn that it's not about the quantity of friends you have, but it's about the quality of the friendships you keep.

I don't regret moving and wouldn't change it for the world but I listen to people who say "I'll move, no big deal." and I think about my situation.  

I started over in a new city and I started over in every aspect of my life.  A new house, a new job, new favorite places to eat and new friendships.  I still have the same family but with me moving even the family dynamic changed.

It took me a while to realize that what I thought was me being homesick wasn't that at all.  It was me wanting the past back.  I wanted my friends to come over for Game Night on Saturday night, I wanted to skip work one day and go some place fun with a friend for a lot of laughter.  It doesn't matter where I live, those things don't happen like they did before.  They're still possible, just not on a weekly basis.  The past is the past and it has made me who I am but I am in charge from this point forward. 

Does this mean I passed the test?  Does this mean I grew up?. 

Monday, March 14, 2011

Get Busy Living......

To quote a movie high on my list.......
Get busy living, or get busy dying.  That's from Shawshank Redemption.  That quote is from Tim Robbins' character, Andy Dufresne.

I think about life, and death, all the time.  I wouldn't say I'm obsessed but it does enter my mind at least once per day.  Watching the news coverage of all that is happening in Japan because of an earthquake I am reminded that life is over in an instant.  

How many people have a chance to say goodbye like they do on tv or in the movies?  I can personally think of only one or two.  How many people lay on their death bed and think "I did everything I ever wanted to do.  I have no regrets." ?    I know NONE!

What are you waiting for?  Do the things you want to do.  No matter how big or how small.  I know some things require planning and saving money or waiting for the opportunity but while you work out the details to the bigger things in life don't forget the small, simple things that you can do on a daily basis. 

You have to keep living.  Life goes on.  Time marches forward.  


I live by what I think, are some pretty simple rules.

1. Always tell people you love them.
2. Don't fight dirty.  Don't say things you don't mean.
3. Don't lie.  People know when you're lying.  They usually won't say anything but they're almost always insulted that you think they're stupid enough to believe your lies.
4. When saying goodbye, say I love you.  What if it's your last goodbye to them?
5. Don't put everything off for "later".  What's wrong with now?  You can't do everything later, you'll run out of time.


Stop and think about that quote for a moment.
Get busy living or get busy dying.


We are surrounded by natural disasters, terrorist acts, life ending or altering accidents and of course the end of life in a natural way brought on by age or illness.


I read somewhere that the most important thing on a headstone was the DASH between your birthdate and the date you died.  It stood for all of the things you did in your life.  
What does your dash represent?
We can't all invent something that the entire world can't live without, there's a select few for that but we can all leave a mark on our loved ones and even just acquaintances.  I want people to think of me and smile.  I know people will smile for different reasons; some because I loved them, some because I was there for them, some because I was silly or whatever.  I guess there will even be a few who smile because I'm gone.  Either way, I want my dash to be full.  The only way I can do that is to live life every day!!!


I feel like so many people just get through each day, never really enjoying it.  WHY?  It's a gift, no one is promised a tomorrow.  You don't have to do something spectacular each day but why not do something that makes you smile?  Go for a walk, make a phone call, bake cookies, mentor a child, reach out to the elderly, indulge yourself in a simple pleasure, it doesn't matter what you do...........  JUST LIVE LIFE!


For myself, I choose to Get Busy LIVING!!


~A~