Tuesday, January 10, 2006

A Life Less Ordinary

Growing up, I was always either rebelling or wanting to rebel. I never really wanted a normal life. All my dreams revolved around living a strange life. Unfortunately, since I read and watched too much horror, very few of my dreams were grounded in any achievable reality, or none that I know of yet.

Since meeting T, I started to come around, kinda. I saw his parents, who are happily married after, well, more than 25 years now. His family is pretty normal and they are still fun, warm, loving people. For the first time in my life, I really wanted to marry a man, share his name, build a life, and have a kid with him. Hell, I was even up to naming the kid after his father, who, while a wonderful man, shares the same first name as my shithead father. And, despite being a huge geek in the things I like, I've also found out that my interests are mainstream-like movies, alternative (though kinda mainstream) music, books, etc. I also subscribe to mainstream American consumerism, though I'd like to rebel against it.

My jobs have never been that out of the mainstream, though I usually like to work 2nd or 3rd shift. At first, that was just because it worked with my school schedule. But it is also because I am a night person. Since moving back home, I've worked 2nd shift at a large chain video store and at temp day jobs. I really enjoyed the job at the video store- free movies, great hours, ok people, always moving around. I only missed work when I was stressed and depressed about moving to a new store. But the money sucked and I had no friends because of the hours and management was horrible. So I thought I'd go back to temp day jobs, which pay more and have more stable hours. I thought that eventually my body would readjust to a 'normal' lifestyle. So far, that has not been the case. But the job that I'm working now has inspired me to go back to school to finish my degree and to work hard to be financially stable.

But the closer I come to a 'normal' lifestyle, the more I realize how much I dislike it. I hate working a 9-5 (actually 7:30-4). Even as I long for benefits and paid holidays, I can't stand the hours and the repetition. This weekend, my mother pointed out to me that she'd like me to do more around the house. I feel bad that I haven't done more up to this point. She made a list of stuff for me to do and I'm going to work hard to be a productive member of this family without any more prompting. Today was my first real night of being a 'normal' career woman-of-the-house. And I wanted to rip someone's head off!!!! Nothing horrible happened but between the crazy dogs and the undercooked dinner and the phone, I was frenzied. As I was trying to get into the house without getting the mud from the trash cans on the door or any more on myself, but before I could even start dinner, I realized that, if I was married and/or had kids right now and was expected to do this every night, I would seriously have to hurt someone. I'm not even sure I can do the little that my parents want me to do. I can clean all day and actually be happier when I'm done, but I hate cooking and playing Mom.

I'm really starting to miss my old life. I liked coming home to my cats, who only wanted to be petted and didn't jump all over me until I took them outside. I liked that I didn't have to clean or cook, especially cook, on someone else's schedule. Maybe it is my age, maybe it is just me, but I don't like having to eat at specific times everyday. When I was on my own, I cooked for myself sometimes, but I often just ate a bit here and a bit there. I rarely ate at 'regular' meal times. That is kinda how I like it. Even when I lived with ex-J, we didn't really have homecooked meals. When we did eat at home, it was at random times, and we ate typical college student meals- mac&cheese, rice, scrambled eggs, tuna helper, noodle packets, chicken nuggets. While living there, I worked at a motel, where I ate Cup'O'Noodles, and a bank, where I ate Budget Gourmet tv dinners and snacked on Cheese Nips. Now I'm eating at all three breaks I have because I get so hungry in between and I have to eat when my parents eat.

But this really isn't about cooking dinner or when I eat meals. I don't really know how I want my life to be yet, but I am beginning to figure out how I don't want it. I don't want this normal life, with a day job and coming home to cook dinner and wrangle dogs and take care of kids, the same thing everyday for the rest of my life. I'm not sure I could live La Vie Boheme, but I know I can't live this life.

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