I think I have pretty much decided that there is something I am supposed to be learning here that I can not learn as long as I keep trying to make friends.
I’m actually not depressed or frustrated. This isn’t a whiny post by any stretch of the imagination…just a kind of update.
It’s forcing me to come to terms with my intensity, and trying to meet my own needs, my hunger for intense intellectual stimulation and challenge. I have been striking out with making real life friends that aren’t the parents of my children’s friends. I think I’m too intense even for the internet friends I did have that had time to write me. Lots of musings just kind of tumbled out of me that seemed, at the time, like they needed to be voiced, but pushed my friends away.
Yet, I wonder if this is an intentional, but subconscious thing. Maybe I couldn’t say goodbye first, so I force them to leave with some really weird stuff. I don’t know.
I think it’s plausible because I’ve wanted others to help me fill an intense intellectual need I should have been working on filling it myself but got into some bad habits. This sets up a friendship (or any relationship for that matter) to fail. I will say I was NOT this socially inept when I worked. I just have to say that it sucks talking to yourself in your head all day long.
Besides, as much as I might get to know someone online, nothing, absolutely nothing beats face-to-face contact, something I’m sorely in need of. I really don’t need to be behind a stupid computer trying to connect with a friend I can’t invite out for coffee. That’s just futile.
When I worked in the lab, I used to be surrounded by interesting people who did interesting things and thought complex thoughts and were great mentors and friends. We’d have a blast going out after work, going to Little Italy, Chinatown or Greektown to eat and throw back a few beers (with my crime lab workmates) or dine with glasses of wine (with my university colleagues) and talk about the latest results or research and a little about our private lives.
I just can’t seem to click with others around here in the suburbs. It’s not really their fault. It’s just the way it is.
In two weeks, there’s a lot that’s going to change. The girls will have 6.5 hours in school. I’m thrilled. It’s the first time in 8 years that I’m going to have consistent free time.
I’m setting myself a challenge.
1. I’m going to stop trying to find friends to help me meet my intense needs to socialize and intellectualize.
2. I’m going to the stack of books I have waiting for me, like the biography on Einstein on my shelf I haven’t even cracked open and a few others that I’ve started but need finishing.
3. I’m going to start a one woman book club. Yes, stupid idea, but I want to get more out of what I’m reading. I’ll get the sparknotes of them, look for some online study questions or critical analysis (or come up with my own), just for fun. I know this sounds totally lame, but how many people out there actually read dead German writers who aren’t doing it for a school assignment. I’ve been to a few real life book clubs and I’m not impressed – spend 5 minutes on the book and 1.5 hours kvetching (thanks Rick, I learned a new word AND used it in a sentence).
4. I’m going to start doing science experiments again and enrich the girls more at home like I used to. After doing activities with them for the past 3 years or so, I just got burnt out and lazy. And update the science blog. That was fun and challenging for a while.
5. I might take a class about hobbies…like cooking, or digital photography, or a creative writing workshop, or carpentry (cause I need some new bookshelves) or apiculture (you know…beekeeping), or learn German…or something…just for fun.
6. I’m either going to start sewing/crafting again, or I’m going to give away all my supplies. It’s an albatross around my neck…all these unfinished projects I dreamt about doing once upon a time. Now I just feel guilty having the supplies take up so much space.
7. I’m getting out and going places. To the matinee by myself. To the arboretum. To the museums in the city. I don’t care where. I’m driving the kids to school at 8 am…by 9 am I can be in the city and still be back in time to pick them up for school.
8. I’m going to figure out what to do for real work again. I’d like to think I’m going to do something interesting again. I’m *only* 40. Plenty of time to get that Ph.D. I’ve always dreamt of (ahem, yeah, not sure about that after having read a lot of other bloggers’ disillusionment with grad school) or maybe I’ll write a book that makes the bestseller list for a bazillion weeks. Yeah, right, okay.
So, yeah…that’s the plan, Stan.