Friday, February 25, 2011

"But How Can You Know What You Want 'Til You Get What You Want And You See If You Like It?"

Stephen Sondheim, you are a genius.

I've been thinking a lot recently about what I want. It seems that there's always an ideal in your head, or something that you at least think is ideal, but the ideal doesn't always turn out to be so...ideal. Know what I mean? I've had several possibilities rolling around in my head lately of what I think I want. Here are some of them (in no particular order):

1. I want a job where I get full time hours, make decent money, and have a set schedule (or one I set myself) that doesn't include Sundays that involves something I'm actually good at. I would love to have some job land in my lap that would involve proofreading textbooks at home or something. That's the ideal, but as soon as I find myself looking for a new job, I start panicking over everything that would change: I'd lose seniority and find myself the new person that knows nothing, without the benefit of being surrounded by close friends. I actually had an interview this past week for a job that I really do want, but I get scared and start thinking about running away. What if I'm no good at a new job? What if everyone hates me? What if I can't get time off for my trip to Nashville to see my brother graduate from law school? I know that it will be worth it in the end to have a good job that I'll grow to love, but since I notoriously over-think, it stresses me out anyway.

2. I want to get married. (Now, I know what you're thinking: it'll happen when it happens. Just read the entire post and you'll know that I'm aware of these things.) I'd almost like to say that I'd be cool if I ever even went on a date, but quite honestly, I'd like to just fall in love with a friend and have that be that (remember that these are ideals...which is sometimes synonymous with delusion). I don't want to deal with the stress of being shot down and not being liked back. At least when I don't date, I can't find myself in the middle of a relationship that isn't going anywhere no matter how much I want it to (that's just an example; not based in real life).

3. I want summer. This is less serious, but there it is. I'm tired of being cold and I'm tired of the sun going down so early. I want to wear shorts and short sleeves and wear summer scents and buy Jamba Juice (it's really not the same in the winter).

So here's the conclusion that I've come to: we never learn anything from ideals. Living paycheck to paycheck teaches me the value of money and to be wise in my spending. Staying single for a while gives me the opportunity to grow and progress myself before joining with someone for eternity. Winter is a necessary season, since that's when we get the majority of our precipitation for the year. Each of these non-ideal situations teach us things that we would never learn if we just waltzed our way through life. Besides, if we got everything we wanted as soon as we got it, we really wouldn't appreciate our ideals.

Here's all we can do: we take life a day at a time and we do the best we can. We learn from whatever situation we find ourselves in and, most importantly, we put our trust in the Lord. Sometimes I feel like I have absolutely no idea what's going on in my life, but I know that He knows exactly what's going on, and how and when it's going to happen. Sometimes I can almost hear Him say, "Just hold on, Michelle. It'll all work out in the end." And I listen to Him, because I know that no matter what I think I want, He knows exactly what I need, and what I need will be so much better than anything that I could ever think that I want.

Sunday, February 6, 2011

"Involving My Olfactory Sense Makes It Real For Me"

Yesterday, while putting my clean sheets on my bed, I noticed a small snowman attached to the bottom corner of my bed frame, against the wall. Curiously, I removed the snowman and studied it, trying to decide its origins. I had never seen the snowman before. The snowman had a clip of sorts on the back, and a clear, squishy stomach which seemed to encase some sort of liquid. Here's what it looked like:

Upon closer investigation, I saw some explanation. Apparently, the snowman was some sort of portable scent...provider. I leaned in and sniffed, curious as to what it would smell like. It was vanilla, but not regular, happy vanilla. The vanilla smell I experienced was the same scent that comes with laughing gas at the dentist's office. One sniff, and I could practically feel my limbs numbing and my terrifying childhood dentist telling me to "Open" (hear it how I hear it, and start shaking in your boots).

It's funny how something as simple as a scent can transport you into the past. I have a perfume that I bought at the Disneyland Sephora last Spring Break. The scent is Malibu Lemon Blossom, and every time I smell it I think about the Indiana Jones ride, the sundeck of the Queen Mary, and the wind in my hair as we drove up the Pacific Coast Highway. It's great.

Of course, it goes the other way. I can't think of an instance right now, but it's also very possible to smell something that reminds you of a horrible memory, something that you'd totally forgotten and all of a sudden, it's there again.

Just some thoughts :)

Oh, and for those who wondered, the title comes from an episode from Big Bang Theory.