I worry

I worry a lot and I worry often. It’s like the exercise I’m supposed to do but put aside because, well, I need time to worry about life—always so general, always so specific. Worrying takes up most of my time, a full-time job with not benefits. And because there is always more time to worry, I’m worried about how much I worry.

Worrying is easy, at the beginning at least, before it’s all-consuming. It then becomes necessary. The natural response to uncertainty creates anxiety and finds its way into your regular life, and it disrupts it. When you realized you haven’t eaten a proper meal, with some greens, because it just didn’t seem that important, you worry. Or you worry about still not caring about your diet.

Taking a break seems like a healthy thing to do, right? Except, if you take a break you don’t make progress on those things you’ve been anxious about. So, you go back to worrying.

Netflix, The New York Times, and a Schubert piano sonata are all wonderful ways to relieve your worrying self. But you finish the new season of Narcos, read your healthy dose of David Brooks and Frank Bruni, and listen to the piano come to rest on a G major chord, and you’re back to worrying—if you were lucky enough to forget about it in the first place.

Im okay, I tell myself, and I believe it. I may worry a lot, but it’s just that: worry. I know it’s unhealthy, but it’s the one coping mechanism I have at my disposal. I don’t want it, in case you’re wondering.

When will I stop worrying? I might have to worry about that later.

Proud of my complexity, doubtful of yours

I am proud of my complexity. Sure, some days I think about my simplicity. Invite me to get some coffee and have a good conversation and you’ve made my day. Give me politics, classical music, and a novel, and my life may feel complete.

But I also enjoy trova; stories that will never resemble my conservative, I guess, lifestyle (but feed my curious mind); guilty pleasures like Gossip Girl; … and … I ran out of things to list.

Perhaps, I’m quite simple.

But, like many others, I am proud of my thinking. I tend to wave the flag of objectivism, of reason over emotion, naively boasting of my unbiased opinions with ironic passion and a pretense of composure.

I am proud of my complex thinking. I am proud that I can have an extent of loyalty to an institution or ideal without being blinded to its shortcomings. In fact, by talking openly I want to show that complexity. Not many can do that, right?

As a complex being, one holier than thou, I patronize you when I see you sharing blatant falsehoods throughout Facebook. After all, you are not a complex thinker. And that’s okay, not everyone’s gifted.

Becoming blinded by well-fed sense of superiority, I turned into an asshole who overlooks his own fallacies and gets into an unending, useless argument on technicalities. And, emotion triumphed over reason.

I, of course, can’t accept that. So, I’ll just keep being proud of my complexity and doubtful of yours. I’ll reduce you to a couple character traits.

I am keeping my dignity and taking yours with me.

Openness

You don’t like those fake people, right? Those that try real hard to be something they’re obviously not. The ones that smile at you and then talk behind your back. You know, those people who are just like you.

I’m fake, aren’t you? Sure, you may not be as fake as Jenna or Steve who are seriously gonna be praying for ya (you go, gurl!). But don’t we all wear this mask to hide those smaller or larger imperfections we just can’t stand and wish we didn’t have.

That’s not a bad thing, is it? I mean, it is great that we are trying to better our selves. One implication may be that we have to know ourselves before we decide there is something that must change. This is not necessarily true, and even if it were, it could just go away the more we wear our meticulously crafted masks.

You may not know yourself, you pick your favorite from the self store. You’ll get tired of wearing a self that’s not yourself, I suppose. So, what do you do then? Is your self somewhere inside or were you meant to develop it?

Shouldn’t we take the time to know ourselves, to know who we are—our noble ambitions, our bad habits, our reprehensible desires? Isn’t this the only way our self can truly engage in honest interactions with other selves?

I understand the need to wear a mask. Perhaps it is the ideal self I aspire to be. However, I believe it can only work if it represents myself instead of someone else’s self, like a lake gives you an accurate, yet somewhat blurry, reflection.

The more I think about it, the more I begin to think I’m talking about my own condition. I’m that fake person I don’t want to be.

If only I could show myself as I am—but then you might not like me, would you? So I show you my reflection, the one I’m talking to now.