Friday, February 20, 2015

own your shit

so, yesterday i deleted the facebook app from my phone. it feels quite momentous to do so. and more than a little bit liberating. now those moments when i'm waiting for sabin's train to come or for my turn at the bakery, i can just be with myself, in my own thoughts. i don't have to entertain myself with the inanities of the latest gizmodo or nytimes share or who has just had a coffee with pretty latte art. and i didn't take the drastic step of leaving facebook altogether (baby steps), i just now have to look at it via my computer instead of on my phone all the time. i left it on the iPad, because i've got a wifi iPad and use it more like a laptop in the evenings, so it wasn't such a dominant time thief there. 

there are things i like on facebook and i would miss those. the core group of friends around the world who i interact with the most. updates from the guardian and the nytimes. and the oatmeal and his crazy exploding kittens kickstarter, which just blew all previous kickstarters out of the water. and elizabeth gilbert. she of eat, pray, love fame. i honestly enjoy her feel-good posts. they often feel like she looked into my mind and said, "hmm, this is precisely what julie needs today." like on wednesday when she shared a post about owning your shit. 

she says, "You guys, for serious, it's very important that you learn how to own your shit. At some point in your life, you really have to get honest about the weirdest and most damaged and most broken parts of your existence, and take responsibility for it all...lovingly, but unblinkingly. ... That doesn't mean abusing yourself: it just means taking accountability. Own your shit with love and perspective and self-compassion...but definitely own it."

while we may not control everything that happens to us, we do (and more importantly, can) control our reactions. i haven't done a very good job of that this week and spent a good couple of days completely paralyzed by sheer terror and what feels like the unfairness of my situation. i let it control me and i wasted quite a lot of time and much more energy than i'd like to think about. i was also a complete bearcat to my family and impossible to be around. but, it helped me a lot to just own it. to own that i felt miserable and afraid and anxious and powerless and that i hated all of those feelings and that they were getting in the way of me being able to do something. anything at all. i gave myself permission to feel the way i felt instead of berating myself for being unable to get all of the things done that i "should" have been doing. and it helped, even if it was a bit of a fleeting feeling in that moment. owning your shit is a full time job and it takes a lot of strength. and for me, having that strength isn't a consistent thing - sometimes i'm weak and sometimes i'm strong. but that's part of my shit and i intend to concentrate on owning it.

* * *

gary shteyngart spent a week at the four seasons watching russian state-owned television.
and it was quite amusing.
tho' i'm glad it wasn't me.
and i wonder how different it really was from watching fox "news..."

* * *

i thought this article was very interesting and thought-provoking.
it seems we call for a muslim enlightenment every time there's a new tragedy.
but maybe we no longer really understand enlightenment ourselves.
or modernism.

and maybe what's really needed (tho' that's not mentioned in the article)
is for the sensible, moderate muslims (which are surely the vast majority)
to say that enough is enough.

own that shit.