Saturday, September 19, 2009

All I really want

It's funny, I think that Laura and I are on the same wavelength tonight.  Not about Joni exactly, but that song of hers touches on my thoughts of the evening.  I am trying to figure out what I want.   It's funny that it should be so hard to decide what I want.  It seems like it's easy for most people.  Somehow it isn't for me.  I think it is probably a result of brain injury, but it has never occurred to me that what I want is relevant.  I have tried making good and responsible decisions my whole life.  It seemed like I never really had more than one option, so I just did the best with what I had. 
 For example, I am good at evolutionary biology and I enjoy it most of the time, so this seemed like a good educational path.  Did I ever want to be an evolutionary biologist?  I don't know.  It just sort of happened.  I think it was the right thing for me to do and in that way I'm lucky.  I can remember being a little surprised though when I started applying for positions as an academic scientist.  Most grad students want that job badly.  It was never my goal to become an academic scientist though.  I just did the best science I could and I became competitive as an academic scientist.  

I feel like in the last year I have been defining things about myself.  What colors of nail polish I want to wear.  What kinds of clothes I want to wear.  The sort of people I would like to have as friends.  What I want to read. What I want to say.  How I want my house to look.  I think I should have developed this part of myself a long time ago, but somehow I didn't, and this is still a hard thing for me.  I struggle to decide what music I want to listen to.  It is hard for me to decide how I want to spend my time.  It's sort of like how I knitted for three years before realizing I hate knitting.  It's so strange that it should take so long to decide that I don't want to knit.

I think I am more capable of making decisions now than I have been before.  It's good because I have a lot to make.  I want to fall in love, but I don't even know what I want, or should want from a relationship.  The only thing I usually think of is someone to load the dishwasher while I pack suitcases.  That isn't enough.  I could hire the neighbor kids to do that for me for about $5.00.  I need a relationship worth more than that, but I have no idea what I want it to be like.

I want to move out of Merced and there are a few different ways of doing that.  Going into industry (bad idea in this economy), becoming an instructor (I don't want that), applying for a job outside the US (probably Europe), sticking it out in Merced until I get a grant (that may not ever happen).  Do I want to move to Europe?  I don't know.

I think that I can have whatever I decide I want, but I am not quite sure how to do that.


laura said...

i don't think it's actually so strange to not actively know what you want. i only started actively trying to fix that tendency in myself when boys i was dating called me out on it. my first attempts to tackle it were actually out of submission.
i'm still making sincere attempts all the time.

mim said...

Thanks. You always seem to know what you want. It is good to hear that you don't.