Thursday, March 06, 2014

Lower your expectations.

That’s right. Screw optimism.  
How’s that for a catchy blog title? Sorry folks. I am done with cheery and optimistic. I am cranky and pissed off, and cold and lethargic. My creativity is in the crapper, just beneath my positive attitude.
 I just read an article (In Praise of an Ordinary Life by Alain De Botton, in Flow Magazine), which informed me, in a nutshell, that…
“ …it’s nice when you can raise your expectations, but also very painful, because we can’t always get what we want.”
I think I learned this when I was around three. Up until then, I am pretty sure I got everything I wanted, since that was mostly chocolate milk and the undivided attention of all the adults in my life. At age three, my sister Cheryl was born, and that’s when it all went downhill for this chubby, only child. (Love you sisser!!!)
Still, I was three, a resilient daydreamer, and I managed.
Now I am 49. And grumpy.  I wasn’t supposed to get older, fatter, poorer. I really do want it all, and I’ve been pretending it was actually possible. Until I read this article, which reminded me of what I already knew. That it’s highly unlikely that I will get anywhere near all that I want.
(She says pouting; crossing arms; stomping feet.)
So now I am stuck with figuring out what I really, really want, within the parameters of my measly life, and that is supposed to make me happy.  This life shit is really hard sometimes. 


Marilyn J. Rock said...

Well; I guess it's because I've reached the age of being "Officially Old". At least in the eyes of AARP and all the hearing aid flyers I get in the mail……but I can say - one thing - about reaching this milestone. It's the "f*!king growing up lessons that I've learned and one of them is: if I don't expect - I'm not let down. It's a bit of a painful realization. I try to relay this to my grand daughter, who is 4, now, but is much older in spirit and mind. I'm at the point where I can dream of what I'd really love to be able to do, or get, or want, or need, etc. but I've finally come to realize my life is grand…as is! I'm filled with good health, love of my family, friends - so blessed. A creative gift that allows me to express my dreams, wants, etc on a canvas or even just a little tag! It sounds simplistic but the growing up has helped me reach this point.

It's kind of a shame to think, that at my age, that I now have time to pursue some things that I might have wanted to do or be. But; that would mean expectations and I'm not ready to go back. Some might think it's giving up but it's not - it's a place of comfort now - peace. I'm there!

Life is hard - that's for sure and it surely throws us curves of the "un"expected.

You are SO talented Kerri - intelligent, creative, caring, giving, and beautiful to boot!

Take it from an "old" friend who loves you - - breathe, be patient, you may have to be a little more creative with your time, now, but you can manage that - I have full confidence in you and your abilities.

Frankly, I'm of the belief that we can't have everything that we want (another thing I'm trying to get Sophia to learn) :) - but we can kind of compress things by priority and make the time for, at least, some of our dreams and wants to come true.

Hoping I make sense here; what can I "expect" from someone my age :)

I love you! M xo
PS Perhaps a "Cabinet" meeting is in order? Wine, snacks and some conversation? I'm ready when you are! xo

fran pascazio said...

First of all Kerri, through away that damn magazine, book or whatever the hell it is you were reading! Besides, "ordinary" is wonderful! I have,like Marilyn, come to the point in my life where I can say to everyone and everything "if you don't like it, too bad!" They can take away your car, your house [god forbid either of these things], your cloths, etc. BUT NO ONE CAN TAKE AWAY YOUR DREAMS! Hell, I dream every night Robert Redford is going to call me to come live with him! I KNOW that will never happen, but what the hell. Who am I hurting by dreaming? I NEVER READ anything that is remotely listed as "self-help" or "support"…it's all bullshit! It only makes you feel inadequate. You know who you are, you know what you want, and you know what you'll settle for.

Kerri you have so much to be thankful for. Don't let some article bring you down. I'm sure this all stems from your new job and all the demands it's making on your time…..but rest assured "this will pass" and your life will become manageable. Don't let anyone, anyone, anyone take away your dreams.

Second, I agree with everything Marilyn said, so well I might add.

Third, a cabinet meeting is certainly in order! You need an intersession here!

Don't lower your expectations, just try to put them in order of importance…, we can't have everything we want, we know that, but we can certainly try to weed out what is important and keep the rest. We believe in you!

So take some advice from two "old" friends…..keep cool and be yourself…keep dreaming and hoping and if only some of it happens than it's all worth it.

Createology said...

Kerri Dear I have read your post...several times. I have read the two comments from Marilyn (whom I adore) and Fran (whom I don't know). My perspective is very different from your perspective. You are 49 and I am 65. I have come to understand that "Life is Difficult" however I am in my comfort years where I am pretty okay and sometimes even happy with how my life is. No, I never reached my dreams or goals but now those have changed anyway and I like how life is overall. I would suggest you take that article and gesso over it and then paint and draw and cover it in beautiful art you create. I just mailed you an envelope earlier today. I was thinking of you and hearts. I cannot and will not try to tell you how to live. I can merely tell you with age does come wisdom and comfort and grace. Loving Hugs My Longtime Blogging Friend. P.S. My daughter is 46 and so I can relate some to your age. She is long time single and has two daughters 24 and 26. I think her life perspective would be epic! I'm just sayin...

Peggy Beck said...

Kerri. I am catching up and having read your post and the posts of Marilyn, Fran and all I have to say that they are so on target and right about how things are and would say all those things to you as well. It's a big adjustment when we have all day every day to think about what we want to do and then go into a job where all that is taken away. You are so creative, you will find a way all your own in which to do your thing and it will be fabulous and wonderful and bright and cheerful. I even like your girl with her arms crossed. Even she is beautiful as we all relate to that from time to time. So no matter what you are feeling, it is ok and it too is only temporary. You will be out of this funk as soon as the weather gets bright, sunny and the life of flowers and grass come back to us. It seems like it will never happen right now but it is on it's way. I promise. So much talent shall be shared and we will all love what you do because we love you as you are, grumpy and all.