Wednesday, March 07, 2007

You look so careless when they're shooting that bull, don't you know Heartaches are Heroes when their pockets are full.

Today in my Counseling class, we took little individual surveys about the prevalance of "irrational" belief systems and values that we have. Like, where they have questions on which you agree or disagree, with different values to each question, and you add them up at the end, and there are categories and everything. It's quite complicated, and I'm not really sure what it all means.

However, for column A, I scored 9 out of 10 (the closer to 10, the more you hold the "irrational" belief), which reads:
The higher the total, the greater your agreement with the irrational idea that it is an absolute necessity for an adult to have love and approval from peers, family and friends.

I also scored a 9 on D:
The higher the total, the greater your agreement with the irrational idea that it is horrible when things are not the way you would like them to be.

And, a 9 again on F:
The higher the total, the greater your agreement with the irrational idea that you should feel fear or anxiety about anything that is unknown, uncertain or potentially dangerous.

I also scored a 7 out of 10 on B:
The higher the total, the greater your agreement with the irrational idea that you must be unfailingly competent and almost perfect in all you undertake.

I also scored multiple 6's and a couple 5's. All over 50% on the scale of irrational beliefs.

On Friday, we're going to go over them in class.

* * *

On my way to school this morning, I got to thinking about why I bother keeping this blog. It's something I've considered before, but never came to any conclusions about. I still haven't, really, except to say that I really enjoy doing it, even if I do often have existential conflicts about what to write (personal vs. non-personal, and if personal, how personal?), and only think about 4 people ever read this thing regularly. I guess I write it for people to read.... No, that's dishonest; I absolutely write it for people to read, but why?

For me, it just feels like a fun way to sort of keep in touch, even if it might only be a one-way touch. The older we get, and the more scattered our lives get, and the more entrenched we become in our routines, communication just becomes more scarce. It's also a way for me, I think, to feel like I'm still out there. It's hard to explain, I guess, but over the past couple of years, I've just begun feeling a really acute disconnect and sort of alienation from most of my friends. It's no one's fault, and there's nothing that can, or should, really, be done about it; it's just the way things are. Sometimes it feels like we all have less and less in common, or maybe I just have less and less in common with people. Babies, buying houses, honeymoons in Europe, careers that are taking off; these aren't really issues I have much to contribute to. Well, anything to contribute to, actually. I'm really happy for my friends, but, you know, it's not a conversation I can participate in.

I guess that's why I've come to the conclusion that I now enjoy leaving the party early, so to speak. When I stay to the end, it depresses me. Either I go home alone, or the house empties out. But when I leave, everybody waves to me, and I'm the one that's missed. I think that's a metaphor for all of my relationships. Is that weird? Is it incredibly selfish? Maybe. Do I care? Not really.

One thing I think I've come to discover about Austin is that it's a great city to be either 20 and in college, or in your 30's and married. Anything inbetween pretty much sucks. It's a weird feeling, and maybe every city is like that, I don't know. But I feel really done with it, to the point where I'm starting to panic about this summer, because it's looking more and more like I'm going to be stuck here, and that makes me unhappy. I'm pretty much counting down the days until I leave this years-long party (it's roughly 530) and test my lack of faith in another city somewhere far away. Assuming any of them will have me.

It's funny how your perceptions can change so easily, and your constitution can be challenged so aggressively over one little thing, or some small series of events or changes. It makes me wonder, a lot, about my future. If you'd asked me even two years ago I could have told you what I thought it would be, and what it would entail. Now I wouldn't even venture to guess, and in some ways, I don't care. Giving up all expectations, and a large amount of Hope, can be quite liberating in its own weird way.


mark said...

I haven't read your post yet - I'm going to after this - but the title of it is from one of the MY FAVE SONGS EVER!!

Dr. Cox said...

Duh. Me too.

Mandy said...

I dunno, we probably all feel a little bit alienated (or, after last weekend, Alien-3-inated, har har har). Or like we're having less and less in common. For example, I have no idea what it's like to go back to college like you did, especially with all of your life experience. I wish I could. But I think that what we still do have in common, plus our shared history, will keep all of us friends even as our lives go in different directions. I'm speaking in broad terms about the whole Austin gang, not about you and me... you know our friendship is thicker than blood.

Dr. Cox said...

Aww, that's sweet. There are definitely people that I know will be in my life forever, and that I'll always have that connection with. I think it's more of a day to day thing. And yeah, I'm speaking of myself too, when I say that it's getting harder to relate. Like you said, only a couple of my friends really understand at all what it's like to be in my shoes right now, too, and that's frustrating sometimes. It's not just that I feel like I have less in common with people, but that people also have less in common with me. It's not to say that I think we're not friends anymore, or that we won't always be, it's just that the nature of those relationships is changing a lot. Finding new ways to connect. I guess you could liken it to "growing pains" in a sense.