Cascading disasters

A friend up in PA used that phrase today to describe her day. I am shamelessly stealing it to describe mine. 

It’s been a long time since I stormed down to the “far” Starbucks. A year to the week, in fact. 

I found myself wishing that I could pop a Plan B pill and it could change most of my life decisions that led me to this point. 

While I was at the “not the closest” Starbucks, I read a great blog post from my favorite psychic, Erin Pavlina. She had a dream where one of her guides showed her what the outcomes would have been had she made different choices. It was riveting. 

The takeaway was that there were happier outcomes and sadder ones. But the one life she might have loved most was the one where she followed her happiness with each choice.

They struck me. That HAUNTS me.

It reminded me of somehimg I read the other day. I can’t recall what it was but I’m sure I bookmarked it somewhere. 

Basically it said that even if you make OK choices, life gets you anyway by crushing you under the weight of others’ life choices. Like if you’re responsible for, or otherwise affected by substance abuse or suicide or parents who just never took care of themselves and can’t anymore. (*Cough*)

When things get stressful at home, I tell myself it’s a choice. The universe isn’t forcing me to do this. I choose my life. 

And usually it’s a good choice. It distracts me from what feels like a never-ending toll, paying for the sins of the fathers. And especially the mothers. 

But then you have a set of cascading disasters … and you realize you could very well hang yourself with your “happiness thread” … and you recognize that don’t want the wrong things to change.

I was reading something about how you have to figure out what you’re willing to sacrifice for happiness. Want to travel and enjoy your life? Good for you. But do you want to be great in business? Then give up those nights and weekends with a smile. Want to be a mom? Learn to enjoy vomit on your clothes. 

I thought of that this weekend. Do I want to lose 125 vacation days every five years? No. But do I want an Amex and the ability to pay off my trip within a week? Hell yes. 

So, what’s a little fury that can be walked off by taking the long walk to Starbucks so you can take that extra 10 minutes to cool off?

I also got to thinking about a choice I wish I could undo. Michael Strahan interviewed for and accepted a position without telling his friend/boss Kelly Ripa. She’s understandably furious about how the news was delivered (in a meeting). 

People say well, the job market is improving. No one needs to tell their boss shit anymore.

Here’s the thing. I wish, when I finally want to search, that I could be honest. I didn’t just leave jobs or bosses. I left TEAMS. And no amount of notice changes the fact that you are breaking the dynamic. 

And I wish this were a world where people felt safe saying they are stuck or burned out or up for a challenge they can’t find. 

Back in the day, people would help you find your way. I see it from time to time with the Solitaires and Soccer Balls to the Skull of the world. They generate enough pity or sympathy that everyone realizes you can’t throw these bear cubs into the wild because they wouldn’t survive. So you clean their cages till they finally fall over even though they died 15 years ago. 

I don’t want to be them. My thread is tugging me away from that.  I just don’t know if I would deserve grace when I’m so unwilling to give it sometimes.  

Unlike the Betnie Bros, I know the world don’t owe me shit. He can attack soulless corporations all he wants … and the employees of those big bad companies can say their companies gave up on them … and they might all be right. 

But at some point people give up right back. Some people. Soccer Ball to the Skull people. And pretty soon you’re all just a salary and overhead rather than someone who is kicking the ball. 

Or maybe you become Michael Strahan and float out on a yacht while the bridges are burning behind you. Even if you didn’t start the fire, someone else always has to put it out. 

I wonder if my happiness thread got singed along the way. And how I’m going to meet the people who can help me weave it back together again.  

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