Wednesday, March 19, 2014


I'm facing a serious temptation to do something very stupid. Or maybe just wrong. Or maybe it's stupid because it's wrong. But how do I overrule my desires? I'm generally not an impetuous person. I have a PhD after all, which is basically an exercise in delayed gratification. I told myself I could exit after the MA, but in my heart I knew that would never happen. I was going to finish what I started. It took a long time, it didn't make me very happy, but I got it done.

Have you heard the reports about those studies where they put a marshmallow in front of a little kid and tell them that if they wait a few minutes to eat it, they can have TWO marshmallows? The kids came up with all kinds of strategies to avoid eating them. They sang to themselves, turned their backs to the marshmallow, pretended it was a picture--but some kids couldn't wait and ate it anyway. I wondered which kind of kid I was so I asked my mother. She said with no hesitation that I would've waited. That felt right. I was all about maximizing the amount of candy available and if that meant I had to wait five minutes to get more candy, I would've waited.

Given my capacity for restraint, why, in my personal life, do I so often fling myself headlong into situations that are completely doomed? Sometimes I've enjoyed these situations. Other times I've deeply regretted my actions. I've also gotten my heart broken more than once. I am more resilient these days and I can see more clearly where the problems lay. And yet, I want to venture once more into this doomed arena. I want to feel those feelings.  Maybe that's it? The doomed but passionate romance of my role models playing out over and over again on a much smaller scale? Ugh.  Am I really that stupid?

Right now, the urge to say no is very strong. I want to jump off that cliff and damn the consequences. But...maybe I can wait. Maybe I can just slow this train down a little. And maybe if I can manage that, it will allow some time for reason to catch up with passion. But even if it doesn't, I know I'll survive.

Grateful for: the tiniest bit of self control.

PS You may have glimpsed very briefly another version of this post where I say I'd lost the content. I did lose it in ScribeFire (we're done!), but I forgot that I cut and paste the content into Word to do a spell check. Whew!


  1. No disrespect, but it sounds like your life has way too much self-control. Maybe what you need is to embrace the crazy impulsiveness and throw yourself headfirst into it all the time. Why do you care about getting hurt? Life is about experiences and stories, good and bad.

    1. Well, I like what you're saying because it encourages me to do what I want. And I have done what I wanted. I think I'll be fine but I still know it wasn't right.


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