In no particular order, of either importance or weight, some things I wish I was better at:
- Managing my mood. I can swing between "cranky bitch" to "ice cream sundae-sweet" in less time that it takes the average sitcom to set up their opening jokes, and the effect, for both me and my partner, is one of emotional whiplash. I would like to be more even-keel, more predictable.
- Worrying! I worry all the time, about the weirdest stuff. I worry that I'll be broke forever, that we won't get into the housing co-op that we want, that zombies will rise and somehow get under my bed, that I'm gaining weight, that I'm getting acne, that I won't be able to get the stain out of that one shirt, that my kids will be deformed (emotionally or physically), that having kids will make me boring, that I already am boring, that I'm not good at the stuff I like doing, blah blah blah, FOREVER. It's a constant loop of anxious thoughts, varying from the mundane (why is my work computer not backing up its files?) to the sublime (what will happen to me when my parents die?). I would love to be one of those "que sera, sera" people, because worrying solves literally zero problems, and creates its own turbulence, but so far, it seems to one of my constants. Yay.
- Reading the books I buy. The Japanese call this tsundoku, or having an always-growing collection of unread books. My pile is probably up to my waist.
- Finding time for creative stuff. I don't know why this particular new job is kicking my ass so much, but since I started in March, my creative output has been pretty much zilch. I need to carve out the time, even if it hurts, because it hurts more when I don't.
- Stretching. Self-explanatory.
- Managing my money. I am either spending it like it's 1922 and I'm Jay Gatsby, or I'm spending it like it's 1936 and I'm in a Dorothea Lange photo. Right now we're saving for our wedding, so everything feels very tight. We haven't had a drink in a bar or a meal in a restaurant in months; instead, cash goes towards bus fare out of town to meet with caterers, and deposits for rentals, and shoes I will wear literally one time, and all the zillions of little things that a wedding is. I feel like I'm underwater. Part of me thinks, "Oh, this is good training for when you have kids, and all your money will go towards their expensive-ass stuff"; part of me just wants to cry, because that's a very dim light at the end of this particular tunnel.
- Keeping up with music. Part of it is that the landscape has changed—there's no real MuchMusic for me to watch (even if I did have cable), Rolling Stone is a shadow of its former glorious self, and Spin is dead. Part of it might be that the genres I loved in in my youth have changed—does modern-day hip-hop have anything equal to Blackalicious, Talib Kweli, Mos Def or Wu-Tang Clan? All I see right now is Drake and Kanye, but that can't be everybody.
- Pancakes. I always flip them too early or too late. Mike is a pancake master, but I am B-grade at best.
- Sewing. My seams are never straight.
Image via Fuck You Very Much