Monday, December 8, 2014

Out of My Control

So, I have decided not to fret about my "expansion around the middle" until after Christmas.
(I type this as I eat another one of those damn candy bars Mark brought home.)
Chocolate ALWAYS wins.
But seriously, at this given moment...I really could care less.
I have lots of lovely, drape-y clothes.
And I am the queen of there we go!
(Yeah...I say all this now, but there will be tears in my beer on Christmas Eve, when I can't find anything to wear because I'm too fat for all of my flashy evening I will be the one in the front of the church wearing the obnoxious mumu I got in Hawaii fifteen years ago.
Ain't no one gonna be lookin' for the star in that church.  They will be far too distracted by the big ball of Hawaiian leisure wear screaming at them from the piano bench.
This pic scares me...just a little.
Mele Kalikimaka is the thing to say, when you say Merry you!

I realized today that I am officially feeling stressed.
I have been working really hard, in an attempt to get everything ready for all of the things I have coming up.
While I have managed to pull a lot of material together, I have yet to make final decisions...and that is the part I hate.
Well...not really hate...but just stress over.
I want everything to be PERFECT....but there are too many variables, so it's hard to determine what exactly needs to happen to ensure perfection.
Just reading that last sentence is stressful.
I have also noticed that my choir doesn't seem to be too concerned about getting things done this year.
I feel like we have been working on this material for the past couple of months...but have made little progress.
Now THAT stresses me out.
That is the one variable that is out of my control.
Other people.
I can't control whether or not they come to rehearsal.
I can't control whether or not they practice parts that they struggle on.
I can't control whether or not they focus when we rehearse, or if it is more of a social hour for them.
And so, I keep plugging along, grateful for those who plug along with me....and just keep praying that things will come together.

Speaking of things that stress me out....
Have you ever been in the presence of someone who seems to have negative energy just pouring out of them?
(I am smirking just a little...because I know of a someone out there thinking "Yes...and her name is Beth Lakmann!!!") I am hoping that this person is the only one who feels that way, because, quite frankly, I consider myself a pretty positive gal.  Sure, I have my bad days.  I will venture a guess that my negative behavior is simply a reaction to how someone else treats me.  (Then it kind of all makes sense, you see.) 
ANYWAY.  I do know a person who just seems to be genuinely negative.  ALL THE TIME.  Even when I have seen this person seems as if there is an "I'm smiling now...but behind this smile...I am actually ticked off about something" to it.
I suppose I could divulge that this is the same person who completely went off her rocker when Lexie came to church with curlers in her hair.
 (Remember that story?)
I have spent a lot of time observing this person over the years....just trying to figure her out.
Is she happy...but just doesn't express it well?
Is she sad, and hides it behind this wall of sarcasm? (but not funny sarcasm...)
Is she insecure, and this is how she put a wall up to protect herself?
Or, is this just her personality?
Well...after 10 years, I have come to the get what you see.
So now I am trying to figure does one live life with such a negative approach (and I am not exaggerating here....we are talking constant complaining, eye rolling after any comment someone makes, shooting down other's ideas, on and on...) and not be completely miserable?
(And I know she is not miserable.  She is very happy with her family life and career.)
I suppose, it's just who she is, so it doesn't make her miserable.
But it makes ME miserable!
I can literally feel the negativity just wrapping around me.  
I want "Dr. Feel Good" and instead I get "Dr. Death!"
What is so interesting to me is how quickly a group dynamic can change.  
If you add someone who is really outgoing and fun, and super positive, it becomes contagious.  And then, the opposite is true.  If you bring in someone who is a "Debby Downer," it can really bring a negative vibe into your group.
There are so many "case studies" that I want to do!!!
This would be one of them.  The effect that people have on their environment.
Seriously, think about it.
Think about one of your classrooms when you were a kid.
For the most part, all of the kids just kind of blended in.
But, there were a couple who stood out.
There was the one who always got in trouble.
There was the class clown.
And then maybe the really smart, brainy kid, who always answered the questions.
Every group always has a couple of "big" personalities.  This doesn't mean that they are any better or worse than the rest of the group.  It just means that there is something about them that makes them stand out.
Usually, because they do something that draws attention to themselves.
It's interesting how that doesn't end with childhood.
In every adult "group" setting I've been's the same situation.
I LOVE going to workshops or conferences, just to observe the group dynamic.
It's so interesting to see how others (women, especially) act in a group of their peers.  
It's pretty interesting when I've gone to workshops with my husband too.  He never shuts up!  I am typically silent..I just sit and observe, unless I have something profound to say.  He ALWAYS has something to say, or ask.
Good God, he must have been annoying as hell when he was a kid.
I am always worried that I will say something that will make me look stupid.
I have been like that forever.
It may have something to do with certain Math teachers in my past making me get up in front of the class and do math problems (that they knew damn well I had NO idea how to solve) on the chalkboard.
Public humiliation is not high on my "things I enjoy" list.
I am guessing I said something stupid as a little kid, and was made fun of or something...and that was where my fear of saying the "wrong" thing was born.

Okay...I have to take just a moment to fill you in on my life at this very second.
One might think I write in a nice, quiet environment, while sipping tea.
Here is the true story. daughter is attempting to learn her Chopin piano solo.  So...there is that.  (And the piano, remember, is one foot away from me.)
At the same time, my husband is downstairs, playing the drums.  Not like playing a, he has a whole drum set. It sounds like the drummer from Van Halen is in my basement.  There have been some epic sounding drum solos coming up from the stairway.  He really is a pretty damn good drummer.
The funny part, however, is that this has been going on for like 30 minutes.
It is the equivalent of a high school boy getting his first drum set...and feeling the need to rock out and play every damn drum lick he has ever heard.
OR....considering Mark's is much like a scene from "Stepbrothers" when Will Farrell goes apeshit all over his brother's drums.
Welcome to my home.
Okay.  I need a nap.
I am going to go snore out all the negativity that was spewn upon me this morning....and breath in happy happy happy!
I will wear my suit of armor next time, and not allow anymore of that crabby patty to penetrate my pores.
And if that doesn't work, I will spike my fancy new water bottle with some delicious mango rum or something of that sort.
That will work just as well as a suit of armor, I believe.

One of these days, I will tell you about some of the case studies I want to do.
In the rare event that I ever decide to go back to school, perhaps I will have some thesis topics all picked out!
Ha!  Who am I kidding.  
I just want to sit in the back of the room and people watch.
I feel no need to write a dissertation on it.
I will just write a blurb about it here instead.
Sound good?
Have a super Monday.
By the way, it's the Feast of the Immaculate Conception.
Perhaps I can use THAT as an excuse for my jelly belly.
I'm pretty sure I'd make a good Mary #2....right?
Or...I can just play Elizabeth...the old barren woman.
I am probably better suited for that role.

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