November 24, 2010

I was recently thinking, after looking at the handy project pictured above by Anna at Door 16, that instead of buying one single other trinket for my house (this one, or whatever new home I live in after I graduate in the spring), I should start thinking about functionality. Organization. Purpose. I don’t need more stuff to display on the fireplace mantel: I need storage that is useful, if also pleasing to the eye. Perhaps a free-standing wardrobe, since I share a tiny closet with my boyfriend. A bookshelf to deal with the explosion of novels and textbooks piling up on our floors. A filing cabinet for all my papers. What I do not need, at this point in my life, is a set of vintage salt and pepper shakers, a Danish teapot, or a copper piggy bank, adorable though they are.

I’ve realized the same goes for other aspects of my life. I’ve been participating in the 30 for 30 challenge, not as an exercise in vanity not only as an exercise in vanity, but to develop, or reach a better understanding of, my own sense of style. And I’ve already learned that while my closet is overflowing with clothing, I have way too many items that are repetitive, of poor quality, unflattering or just plain unnecessary, while I lack a few key pieces that could really improve and transform my wardrobe. And I’m not only talking about style. For months I’ve been meaning to buy running shoes but haven’t brought myself to make the “splurge,” yet I bought several items at Forever21 recently. Something doesn’t add up.

The money wasted on insignificant purchases rather than put into a travel fund. Less tangible examples: The inefficient ways I use my time and energy, rarely spent conquering those goals that would truly improve my life.

Each morning my dog Herman wakes up full of joy, excited to begin a new day, tail wagging, bouncing around, grinning, really. As though, for some inexplicable reason (since most days are rather dull for him), this one is going to be an adventure. I think I’m the same way. I wake up bursting with positive energy and ambition. But somewhere along the way, I get off track, very little gets done–beyond my most immediate needs, which aren’t insignificant as a grad student, I’ll admit. But at night, I mentally run over everything I wished I had accomplished, mourning the opportunities I’ve missed.

I’ve been writing about this kind of thing for years, and talking about it doesn’t do much. But if nothing else, here’s to a productive day.

Some writing that got me all worked up last night:

The Wild and Wily Ways of a Brunette Bombshell
Be Conscious of Your Treasures
Finland, The Land Of Bears…
Mr. and Mrs. Globe Trot
Finally, a travel writing and photography contest. This led me to revisit, swoon over, some of my pictures of Scotland: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13. (And that ain’t even all of them.)

The thoughts swirling around my head are somehow appropriate for Thanksgiving. Excitement and pride that my sister–after years of hard work and despite her propensity to attract bad luck–has been accepted into my university. Heartbreak that one of my oldest friend’s newborn baby has died.

A quote from the 37 Days piece that stood out to me (so much I posted it on Facebook):

“In such a world of thanksgiving, a death becomes a new way of living in relationship, a loss of income becomes an opportunity to follow your real desire line, a broken heart becomes a way into deep emotion.”

We will return to normal programming soon, folks.

2 Responses to “Detox”

  1. Ana Says:

    This post really struck a chord with me, especially the part about “mourning missed opportunities.” I have to wonder, though, if this is only a self-perceived notion that’s common among restless, ambitious people. Here’s a very simplified example. In college, I always turned papers in at the last minute as I was always afraid my work wasn’t good enough. A classmate, let’s call her Bedelia, was the exact opposite. One semester she boasted to me how she had finished all of her final projects ahead of time and uttered these words: ” I’m pretty proud of myself. ” Two weeks later, we got our grades – I had 3 As and a B+ and Bedelia had flunked 2 of her 4 classes and had been advised by the dean to transfer to a more “suitable” university.

    I apologize for the length of that story! My point was, maybe this Thanksgiving you should cut yourself a little slack and be thankful you have high standards for everyday accomplishments.

  2. lavietoni Says:

    I’m sorry it took me so long to respond! I do think you’re right, although I’m not sure the quality of my work is that good half the time. It’s okay. But yeah, I can be hard on myself. I think at this point, I’m just not doing something I’m passionate about and it’s getting to me. It’s a transitional time though. Who knows what’s to come? Thanks for your comment <3

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: