Good god, I’m glad it’s 2017. Because 2016 squeezed me through a spiralizer, mashed me up and made a lumpy, wet (gluten-free!) patty out of me that was not as tasty as advertised. There were personal and political losses and my baseline depression level rose to discomfiting levels. There were happy events, too—new friends, great opportunities, unexpected adventures—and I’m very grateful for those.
I haven’t written in awhile because I wasn’t sure what or how. Who am I, with my doubts and failures, my insecurities and anxieties, to offer anything of value to anyone else? Better silence than uncertainty.
But with the new year comes a new philosophy: DGAF.
I thought I’d already embraced the Don’t Give A Fuck ethos at this semi-advanced age, but the more I examine my choices, behavior and even thoughts, the more I realize I’m still trying to attain some mythical threshold of womanhood, success and happiness. I’ve been giving a fuck. Goddammit.
Who am I trying to impress? Who am I competing with and for? What do I need to do and who do I need to be better than in order to feel good about myself? How many people have to like, no, love me? And WHY?
Let’s not get into my childhood issues because boring but also, not the point. The point is I want to live my life for my own reasons. I’m approaching 2017 with this goal: Do shit that brings me joy and DGAF what anyone thinks or says about it.
Somewhere on the marriage and motherhood highway, I lost sight of what makes me happy. Trying to raise thriving kids, supporting my husband’s career, managing a household, fitting into French society, forging a new identity and career for myself, fighting the lost-cause battle against aging and relevance… There’s always a yardstick against which to measure yourself and it’s endless and exhausting. In the meantime, striving to do all the right things means I haven’t been doing right by me. I’m wiped out. (I’ve nodded off twice while writing this. Wish I were kidding.)
As I watch the train wreck of PEOTUS and how desperate he is for approval and likes (ohhh, the lack of A-listers at his Inauguration burns), I’m distinctly aware of the ego monster in all of us. Like any monster, it’s bottomless in need and envy and never, ever satisfied.
What is sadder and more futile than having so much and not being able to enjoy it because you think you need more?
I’m stepping off the hamster wheel of dissatisfaction. I refuse to feel anxious that I’m not doing, being or having enough. No more comparing my life with others’. No more worrying about how impressive or likeable I am. No more embarrassment and regret.
I’m old, fat, fit, young, thin, vain, pretty, lazy, plain? DGAF.
I shouldn’t be blonde, brunette, pink, blue, green, red and definitely not gray? DGAF.
My work is crap, smart, silly, pretentious, ridiculous, stupid? DGAF.
I’m too angry, nice, polite, loudmouthed, inarticulate, liberal, not progressive enough? DGAF.
You don’t like my blog, my face, my ideas, my voice, my cooking, my jokes—and you voted 3rd party/drumpf? DGAF.
And in news that will cheer my husband: The house is a mess, his shoes akimbo in the living room? DGAF.
It’s Day 2 of the new year and I already feel more relaxed than I have in years—though 16 days in Mauritius probably helped. Still, knowing I’m only answering to my own barometer of fulfilment is freeing. It’s also giving me the space to not sweat the small and stupid stuff, which instantly makes me happier. I invite all of you to DGAF, but it’s your life so I DGAF what you do with it (in the most loving way).
Happy 2017, the year of giving absolutely no fucks!
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