Wednesday, March 26, 2014

How Am I Gonna Be An Optimist About This

The title of this post was taken from the song Pompeii by Bastille.

"Optimism is the madness of maintaining that everything is right when it's wrong."

     This quote was my mantra my junior and senior year of high school. I was the teenager that sat in a quiet corner of the library during lunch because I hated social interaction, it was so fake for me. I was the teenager that read dark depressing literature because it resonated with who I was. What I remember most was my cynical attitude. This idea that the happy go lucky people around me were completely nuts. Life wasn't meant to be that dang happy. My need to be alone became so great that I transferred high schools my senior year and told myself I wasn't going to make friends. I just wanted to be alone. I made friends anyway but I still kept to myself.
     Mike and I married shortly after my 18th birthday. It was around this time that my outlook on life started to change. I thought I was pessimistic, but Mike had me beaten. He rarely saw the silver lining or looked for the best in any given situation. This was simply who he was and as a result I quickly found myself trying to convince him that life was to be enjoyed and that we could have fun doing it together. I vowed to be his optimist. I wanted nothing more than to just make him happy. How many times did I catch myself telling him things would work out no matter what because they had to? How many times did I point out every positive outcome for something he thought was a travesty? From the age of 18-32 I was the eternal optimist, and that pisses me off.
     See, at the time I didn't realize that's what I was doing. I thought I had grown up and had a grown up point of view. I thought I always looked on the sunny side of things because it's part of who I was. I assumed that I always looked at the glass half full. I didn't realize that I was doing it for him. When Mike passed away so did my optimism. Now I'm not sure what the heck I am. I feel so betrayed. I feel like I lived a lie for 14 years and didn't even know it. That wasn't who I was, it was who I felt I needed to be in order to make Mike happy. What the hell?! I don't blame him so don't read this the wrong way. I think he needed this from me and obviously I was happy to play that part for him. I would still be his cheerleader if he were here, but he's not. I'm left with this crazy void.
     For the last three years I've found my self in this sort of limbo. Trying to hang on to the optimist I thought I was but reverting to the pessimist I think I really am. I came to this realization while driving the kids to and from sports stuff the other day. I was angry and had no real reason to be. Most of the time I can shove these feelings aside and deal with day to day stuff. I can find joy in quiet moments with my family, but when I'm alone I can feel the anger and resentment simmering. I'm so angry and I can't even explain it. Not all of it is about Mike. A lot is this crazy mess that I feel is me. The fact I don't know who the heck I am anymore. I shouldn't be saying this at the age of 34! I should know who I am! The thought that maybe I never knew who I was just throws me over the edge. I don't even know how to find myself in this life I've already created for myself. Don't get me wrong it's a good life, but there is something missing. I feel incomplete and I don't know what I need to do to fix it. I'm slowly losing the parts of me that I thought were real and I'm left with nothing to fill it except this anger that seems to be all consuming. When I put it all on the line this is where I am. Everything else is what I'm trying to convince myself I need to be.

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