Thursday, November 11, 2010

I'm going to build a mansion.

Inspiration comes in the strangest of places. Like say…a construction site.

Let me explain. Yesterday was a hard day. Hard as in mentally taxing…swamped and busy doesn’t even begin to describe it. But good nonetheless because I was productive beyond belief and plowed through. And I was proud. Another part of me was….irritated.

Irritated why? Well because…many times throughout the day I realized a couple things about myself. Not new things by any means. Things I have always detested. Flaws I genuinely dislike about myself – and not just because they are unbecoming – but because they are nasty to feel. They choke-hold my heart. They squeeze precious energy reserves from me. And I let them.

These two flaws are pretty closely intermingled. They are like best friends, holding hands, whispering secrets to each other, connected at the hip…so much that oftentimes you can’t tell them apart.

They are my paranoia and my need for validation from others. And they are sucking the life out of me. Yet I continue to hold onto them both with white knuckles and all.

So back to yesterday – I worked my literal ass off. Okay, that’s not true because as of this morning my larger than life booty was still hanging out with Sheniqua. But you know what I mean. I’ve put in extra hours to get this new office up and running. I’ve never fallen behind. I excelled. Yet, when office doors around me go closed, I freak out. Are they talking about me? What did I do? Will I be getting in trouble for something? What could that be? Followed by…fear and erratic heart beating. And the truth? It’s never about me…which brings us back to me…because really – it takes a pretty big ego to believe every closed-door discussion is about me. Wow, that stings.

But why the fear? The worst thing I do is blog. Other than that – exemplary, model employee. How come that can’t be enough? Why the panic? Why, why, why?

And then the need for validation pipes in. People are saying “When are you going to get an assistant – you can’t keep this up forever?” And in my mind – the short answer is never. Others are in disbelief it’s all getting done but they know it will. I’ve backed myself into a corner. And NO – I’m not bragging. I’m just saying that having a reputation of doing it all and doing it well and fast….well after a while that kind of work is expected. You can’t really have off days….because that’s not your history. It’s a good history and respect abounds from it…but in my heart I wonder why I created the history. But then again I know why. It’s so someone will notice and validate that they saw it and it was good. The problem with that is….I want that from others because I can’t believe it about myself in my own heart. It will never be enough. And I’m so tired of that. Tired of needing more than I can be. Tired of needing and seeking validation in others.

My new quest in life is figuring out how to be enough for myself. Period.

Oh and the construction zone I mentioned. (you thought I forgot about that right?) Lately that’s how I feel. I’ve been driving by all week and watching the progress and I feel like that’s been me this year.

I was broken, shattered and torn. I had built up years of walls around my heart and had what I thought was a solid foundation. Few people were welcomed in the front door. It was my choice who entered the threshold. I liked it that way. And then I began blogging, began the mental journey of changing…and it was all taken away and knocked down. Just like the tragic flood we suffered that was symbolic in so many ways – it was all gone in less than minutes. Devastation, torment…heartache. And crumbled walls and a heart left open to the world. Inside those walls were broken promises, fights, self-doubt, tears, the need for validation, hate, anxiety and paranoia. Those things aren’t welcome in my new “house”.

I started walking out of the rubble. And just like the crane I saw last week – I’ve been digging out a new foundation. Digging up the broken glass, broken walls, and broken hearts…and emptying them into a truck to be taken away. They aren’t needed anymore.

And then up went new walls. Not “to keep people out” walls….but “to welcome people inside the warmth” walls. A new foundation was poured. I’ve been picking out new windows and curtains to match. I let go of what I never really liked about that old “house” and made changes for the new “house”.

There have been snafus. Over-budget, off-schedule, fights between the builders, disappointments and even wanting to give up. But the construction continues. Because the end product is a dream. It is hope. It is the future. No matter the setbacks – you have to keep building. You can’t just stop building hope and dreams and futures because of little snafus.

You fire deadbeat contractors and you search out new ones who see your vision too. You lie awake at night unable to sleep because you’re laying out rocks and flowers for the new garden that will greet anyone who enters the new place when it’s done. You imagine just where the Christmas tree will go. You see a crackling fire in the fireplace. You can even feel the warmth on your face.

It’ll take a while before my new “house” is finished. We’re gonna run into plenty of snafus. But rest assured, I have the tenacity and strength and the team to keep building. One nail at a time if I must.

And this time I know not to take it for granted. I know that in one fell swoop I could lose it and all the progress. I have to keep working to pay the “mortgage”. I have to carry insurance. I have to do preventive maintenance. I have to hang the obligatory “Bless This Home” sign. I have to keep the demons out and let the angels in. I have to pull up the shades and let the light in – instead of preferring the dark. And over the years, I have to keep adding on. Because you see…I’m pretty sure that my original plans weren’t big enough. I didn’t think I deserved a mansion back when I started building.

But now? Well….there can just never be a house too big right? I’ve got shitloads of guests….like love, hope, dreams, inspiration, self-confidence, pride, self-validation, peace, calm, and understanding.

Sheniqua and Drazil can sleep in the basement, in the corner…under the furnace.


Joia said...

I absolutely love your perspective on life...I've always been an ambitious person myself, taking on more than I think I can handle, and coming through with flying colors. I wonder if my weight and lack of attention from boys in high school (where the weight started) drove me to be this way? Have I always been this way? Was I, too, seeking validation from others? Thanks for the insight!

Dizzy Girl said...

Beautiful post Draz. I've been working on my house for years too. YEARS. Sometimes I get stuck on a particular wall here and there...but I'm learning I don't need to tear the whole house down and start over every time something goes somewhere and I realize I don't love it. I've learned to take it a wall at a time. Now if I can just learn to bring the focus out a little bit so I'm not just seeing the walls only...but the whole thing every time I get frustrated..well...then I would be in a much better place to decorate! I'm working on that too. :)

Thank you for being a great friend- xoxoxoxo- D

Read said...

Oh Draz... Man this one is right there for me. I'm pretty sure I'd never have come up with that analogy, but it's perfect for what's going on with me too. It's wonderful and hopeful and scary all at the same time. But the hope and joyful anticipation continue to win out even if they are dashed from time to time.

I sincerely look forward to the continuing progress of your mansion and of mine, though might I suggest a small servents quarters type cottege a little away from the main house for Sheniqua and Drazil.

All the best!

Ice Queen said...

Bravo, Draz. Love this post. <3

Joey said...

I don't even have a comment because you and I are so alike this way! *sigh* Love you, sweets!

DB said...


Nicole said...

great post..I can so relate

~Lisa~ (Mrs C) said...

Excellent post!! Thank you!! Your words have touched me and have inspired me.. Again, thank you for - YOU!

Band-Babe said...

We are so alike about somethings it's almost frightening. And comforting.

Brooke said...

OMG OMG OMG- thanks so much for posting that.

I have those two twin things going on as well and if I am 100% honest it frequently results in some rage on my part :-)

I planned on blogging about it soon so I'm glad you did and were so honest. Thanks Draz.

MizFit said...


3 things I need in everysinglesolitary aspect of my life to make it through.

Liz - Lizzle - Libby Lou said...

I love your analogy! I related to it so much and you gave me goose bumps! You CAN do this!