I Quit!

Just like that, it’s done. Years of wondering what if, and now a decision has been made. I am scared, I won’t lie. And I feel a lot of guilt. I feel I’ve let people down who needed me, but I know that in the end, I cannot serve them well if I’m not true to myself, and thus I’ve made my decision.

At least leaving Japan should be easy. There have been 5 earthquakes in the last 24 hours, and it might as well be 5 million – it’s too many. I’m not miserable, I’m just over it.

I’ve also developed a deep and relentless longing for bread and cheese, despite having ready access to bread and cheese. Is it really, really different from Germany? Somehow, yes. My body knows, my heart knows. Take me back to cheese and the people I love! It’s interesting because those are the things that comfort me, and they are not things that are risky. However, my soul is really torn between longing for comfort, and needing a future that is packed with challenges and excitement. I don’t want to go backwards, but I’ve got to find a balance. Here is what I know for sure: I want to keep learning, always; I have to. But, I don’t want to do it alone. I’m okay with it being difficult, but I should not feel isolated from the world, which I often do here.

I’ve been reading a lot of blogs from folks who travel all the time, and I think that is not what I want to do. I think it’s an interesting life, but a lonely one. At the same time, I love being places where I can’t help but constantly learn things, simply because of the environment and situations I’ve placed myself in. So how to I reconcile this? I have no idea and guess I will have to find out. This is the jumping off point on my journey. I’ve walked to the edge of the cliff and lowered myself over by my fingertips. The only thing left to do is let go, and take the risk.

First Day!

A smile a day keeps the pain and the doctor away

Today was the first day back at work this year, and it got off to a slow start, but I’m overall it was an easy transition back into the grind. I honestly think spending the past 10 days alone with myself was the best thing I could have ever done. At first I felt lonely, and missed all of you tremendously, but then a sort of deliciousness of the occasion enveloped me. I mean, when have you ever spent 10 days alone with nothing to do? I’m not sure if I ever have. I used the time to read, write, sleep, and dream. I cleaned the house. I went running. I loved my me time!

Part of that “reading” was an audiobook I got from the library called “Perfectly Yourself” by Matthew Kelly.

I actually picked it up a while back and forgot I had it, but decided to turn it on while tidying up and basically just ended up listened to the entire thing straight through. I’m not sure if the book is that brilliant, or if it was exactly what I needed to hear, but it was a huge pick-me-up, and a catalyst for me to work toward my dreams and goals. Plus, he has an Australian accent, so he says “Puwrfictly Yeersilf,” which I also enjoyed. Anyway, the thing that I need to remember was that we all have choices in our life, and we’re responsible for making the right ones. And like a lightbulb flicking on, I just remembered that I can choose to enjoy myself. After spending the past month feeling like work was a very slow-moving rollercoaster that I couldn’t get off, jerking be around without me having any control over the situation, it hit me: I picked this job. I CHOSE THIS. Now what? OWN IT! And that was pretty much all I needed to feel like my old self again, and start concocting plans for world domination.

The first phase of my plan was to purchase what is certain to be the greatest T-shirt of the entire week of January 9-15, 2012. OH YES!!!

To fully understand the joke, you may need to know that my name is Stephanie and my derby name is Rude McClanahan, but everybody just calls me Rude. For these reasons, this is the most amazing shirt I’ve ever seen. I can’t wait to get it!

Before you start to think it’s all just Full House and dictatorial machinations over here, I should tell you about the negatives. Since my normal frantic routine got replaced with relaxation and smiles, I forgot to bring my cell phone and ipod to work today, …and I *might* have forgotten to brush my teeth. No biggie.

Hope you’re feeling lucky on your first day back!

Open Sesame!

This year I am committed to being more honest and open. Since my divorce and work promotions, I’ve found myself really closed off to many things emotionally. It’s a dangerous world out there to just go around openly sharing yourself with others. And I’m not sure that’s what I’m going to do, but I want to nurture and deepen the relationships that I do have, without fearing that it will come back to hurt me in some way. I also want to let go of the people who I don’t want to share myself and my time with, and be free of their influence, which was my major motivation for leaving facebook. I realize I could organize people into “circles,” but I think the natural ones are more real, and I want to delve deeper into my human relationships than facebook will allow me to go. I also want to dig deeper into myself, and doing that in a public forum particularly scares me. However, one of my lifelong dreams is to write, and I find the best writing to be personal. I’m going to have to put myself out there. Wish me luck.