While I am a thinker – always analyzing, discussing, and chatting myself (and my friends) to death, I’d consider myself more of a doer. Like any other transplant who grows roots in New York, I came here with lofty dreams and blind ambition, but I paired those traits with a hard-working, spirited attitude. I’m rarely lazy and I function better when I have a million things to do than if I just have a few. I enjoy being busy; I prefer a fast-paced environment compared to a slow one. I yearn to be challenged and to solve problems that seem impossible.
Maybe that’s why running is a good choice of exercise for me it’s all about motivating yourself to keep going, often without anyone else to encourage me. The problem, though, with being a doer is that I expect everyone else to be the same. And as you can guess (or maybe as you are), not everyone has that get-up-and-go-attitude that I do.
Take Mr. Possibility for example, who wakes up slowly, nibbles on whatever he can find, downs some orange juice, maybe some of that muscle milk stuff that’s so gosh-darn disgusting, and then he clicks around on the computer, flips the TV from channel to channel, then he showers or goes to the gym or picks up coffee or chats on his Blackberry…loudly. There’s nothing wrong with this morning routine, casual Saturdays after all, should be kept casual, I suppose.
But as much as I’d like to think I could just relax and take it easy as he does- once I’m up, I’m up. I’m ready to go. I make my bed, I take a shower, I check my email, this baby, the Times, CNN, and Facebook. I buy coffee on my way to the train, after I make breakfast and clean up after the mess that morning foods seems to always make. I text or call my friends, I figure out what the plan is, and I get moving. I’m not a fan of idle time and because he is, there’s always a bit of tension.
But it’s not just in romantic situations -I’m the same with my friends. My birthday is mid-September, but I’ve already make the Facebook invite and set up a private space at a trendy midtown club. I don’t like to “play it by ear” or “see what happens” – I’d rather have an idea of where we’re going and then let it happen, so I can not only budget my time but my expenses, and most importantly, my outfit. I want to know what’s next, what we’re planning, what we hope to achieve: drinks, dinners, wandering around, working out…what?
What are we doing? And why are you, my best friends, my family, my boyfriend – moving so miserably slow?
Step 11 is about being quiet, meditating, finding inner peace, reconnecting to the universe, being still, and having faith. But if patience is a virtue, I’m not the virtuous. It’s not so much that I want my way – or maybe it is, I wouldn’t deny I can be bossy at times – its just that I want to keep moving, keep going. Rationally I know that being still is positive, but I feel so much better when I go. I mean, my mama swears up and down I skipped walking and went straight to running – so really, I was born this way.
I’m learning as I grow and as I get older though, that getting up and going sometimes leads to poor decisions. It can entice you to enter relationships before you’re ready, agree to things without careful consideration, and make hasty decisions that aren’t always the best. And by being so intent on moving ahead, it can also cause you leave others behind simply because they just take things a little slower. We all move at different paces and our comfort levels rise and fall at varying places – so somewhere between the movers-and-shakers and the restful, wise souls is a happy medium.
A normal person, maybe?
Maybe that’s where I need to be, who I should aim to become – someone sitting sweetly, pacing inside my mind, twirling my fingers and twirling my hair, making endless lists of everything I want to be and want to accomplish, but waiting for a while, completely still. Just so I know I’m doing it right, just so I know I’m not rushing others when going smoother is what brings them happiness. And if they don’t speed up just a bit to meet me in that middle, then I can go without them.
Just a little slower than usual though, so they can catch up if they’d like. So they, in their own way, can get up and go, too.