Monday, March 27, 2017

Doing Life Completely Wrong?

Did you ever suddenly get the sense that you are doing your life completely wrong?

Oh, it may not seem like it is.  You are doing everything you think you should be doing.  You are a responsible citizen and pay your bills and obey the laws.  You are a responsible employee and try to do your best at work.  You try to be a good husband and provide, a good father and guide and listen and transport around, and try to be a reasonable Christian (well, probably not all that good).  Your house is relatively not falling over and your oil is changed on a semi-regular basis.

And yet it completely feels like you are doing your life wrong somehow.  There is a gap, a grinding going through the motions, a hollowness that stares down the quiet corridors of your mind.  The harmony of what your life is supposed to sound like is off key but you cannot find the source of the divergence.

It is not quite a rut, because you realize that doing anything else would probably start to create issues as they would most likely be irresponsible (and possibly bad) decisions.  It is not as simple as a change in job or church, because in reality there is nothing really wrong with any of the things you are doing in the life.

You ask yourself the opposite question:  what would life look like if I were doing it right?  You do not come up with an answer you can use, however.  It seems like life would look a lot like it looks right now, except that it would be somehow different.  What the different is you cannot tell, only that it would be different.

Do you scale things back?  Do you simply ignore the feeling and hope it goes away?  Do you try making some kind of significant change - which possibly seems irresponsible - in the hopes that this will shock the system into something else?

Or do you simply do nothing and live with the feeling, accepting it as the price of having a life which seems like it is going well, even if it feels like you are completely doing it wrong?


Rain said...

That's an interesting thought process. I can relate very well because I did go through a time like that and also a little recently. I had a really bad upbringing that I refused to deal with because it just wasn't done. At 17, I actually found my courage to see my family doctor, telling him about the fear I had, the shortness of breath and the feeling I was going to die (now I know it's anxiety and panic). What was I told "just relax, it's all in your head"...a big eff you to him! Women were still "hysterical" in the 80's I guess.

I knew things weren't right but I couldn't pinpoint it because I had no clue how deeply engrained all of this trauma was. I didn't do a thing about it, I only ignored it and plunged into work, then of course, as logic would have it, I burned out severely but I was STILL reluctant to make changes!

One day I decided live or die, and I chose to live so that's when I made changes. I changed everything about myself: body, mind, spirit and legal name, all in an effort to leave my past behind me where it needed to be. I left everyone behind me and moved 1000 kilometers across Canada to start fresh. It was very difficult but exciting at the same time. I could have easily gone down the irresponsible path because I had a slew of pharmaceuticals and mental illness as an excuse for my behaviour, but I somehow found the value in life, but not trying to please anyone else but me anymore.

Lately the way I've been living felt wrong too because my anxiety showed me that. I'd let things slip with my health routine and I quickly fixed that and feel "right" again.

I don't think it's ever good to ignore the feeling because I did and I lost decades of my life which I do regret, but try not to be too hard on myself. I enjoy each moment now as though it's my last. The key is to live without regret, that's how I make all of my choices now and it results in a positive outlook and lots of joy and gratitude.

Sorry for the long reply!

kymber said...

TB - this is going to be harsh and i am sorry...but to answer your question - you get up off your butt and figure out what it is to live your own personal life right!!!!!!

it sounds to me like you are too involved in some things, not enough involved in other things, and maybe have too many things??? or maybe not enough?

scale back. or go and volunteer with the bunnies 8 days a week. or promise yourself that you will take 30 mins each day for yourself...and feel and breathe. you are at an age when people look back on their lives, feel regret, feel guilt, feel like they haven't achieved anything - but if you need for me to list all of your achievements, it will have to be done in an email - bahahahah!

i hope you don't think i am being preachy...and if you don't want to publish my comment - there is no offense. i just feel that you are searching and reaching - and there are no 2 more wonderful goals than that, at this stage in your life.

ok - maybe you didn't live your life exactly right in the past - but you have your whole entire present and future in front of you. so i will say it again - get up off yer butt and figure out how to make your life more personally right for you!

sending much love buddy! your friend,

Toirdhealbheach Beucail said...

So first of all, thanks for making the choice to live. Seriously. We are the better for you being here.

I am a bit familiar with panic attacks, as my sister and daughter have both dealt with them. They are terrifying (even more so for a parent, I can assure you). Sad that it was not considered more real at a time.

In athletics (not that I am good athlete) we encourage each other to listen to our bodies, because it will tell you when you are doing something you should. I think our internal feelings can serve the same; it becomes a little more difficult (at least for me) as being anxious or depressed is not as easy to pinpoint as a knee or muscle that is hurting.

It sounds like you are in a much better place, for which I am grateful.

Toirdhealbheach Beucail said...

Oh dear Kymber, your "harsh" comments are always welcome.

I think you have hit the nail on the head, which is how the thing started. I do feel like my life is a bit out of whack, like I spending too much time on some things and not enough on others. Not that any of them have been really bad, you understand - just looking at them in the now and asking the question "Why am I doing this?"

Perhaps oddly, the hardest thing is simply to give myself the freedom to stop and search right now. I feel like I should be doing - which (again, as you point out) may be the problem.

Thanks for the yelling! - Much Love, TB