The problem is wanting. There. I have said it. Admitted it. It is written here now.
Sometimes I think that the trick to living a happy life is to stop wanting things. If only you could not want anything, not even happiness, then you could be happy. But then you end up wanting to not to want things, which is maybe one of the weirdest things ever. Is it possible for someone not to want things? I could probably ask one of the many hippie ladies that I know, but in all honesty I’m not sure that they’d have a good answer. I will most likely get the “you need to mediate, do yoga, relax more” speech. I have tried it. Without success.
The main problem with wanting is that sometimes you actually get what you want, and in some unexplainable way you don’t feel any better. Like the Coldplay song “when you get what you want but not what you need”. What if you get what you want and it just doesn’t feel as good as you thought it would be? Do you then 1) start wanting something else or 2) actually try to sort out the crisis you kind of created?
I normally choose option one. I think that is the way capitalism conditioned me to think. And then I want more and more. I make Apple richer and myself poorer in the process.
Ok… So 5 years ago I had a child and 2 years ago another. I thought that if I have a child it would be a perfect opportunity to teach another teeny person all the tricks that I know. Not like I had any freakin idea what I was suppose to be doing, but I wanted to give it a try. It is like a blank canvas. Lovely to look at and you can create what you want.
In a way I find it weird to have children. I remember after having Khloe that I was sitting in my bed after the c-section and then they brought me this tiny person. I was trying to collect my thoughts, minding my own business, eating gummy bears and then there Khloe was. And then I realized I had no clue what I was doing. How am I going to teach her anything if I don’t even have my shit together?
How do I explain the stupid adult rules? Like be quiet when you eat. That you have to eat all your veggies. That you eat meat. Even if she really does not want to.
The real reason of course is that I spent time cooking it and you will eat it- or so I thought. Or that you as a child lack the necessary skill to make the right nutritional decisions. Because if it was up to the girls we will have supper outside under the stars every night and they will bake daily and live on cupcakes. Which would be fine. Not healthy as such.
What I would like to figure out is how do I teach them to be polite, responsible and productive members of society.
Like, how do I teach a child not to spill water at the table or play with their food or splash in the bath without making them doubt every thing they do? On the other hand, I can’t send a kid to school who thinks that, for example, throwing toys at other kids or saying “shut up” things are acceptable behaviour.
2. Whenever I meet someone and they ask what I do for a living, I say that I’m a Managing Director at an Advertising Agency. And then- a doula. Then, as soon as I say the word doula, I pause and look at them. Because when I tell someone that I’m a doula, what I’m really doing is asking, do I look like a doula? Or do you see me as a witchdoctor?
I have no issues calling myself a Managing Director, because I paid my dues to show up and I even have diplomas and qualifications et al with my name on it that tells everyone that I’m qualified to do my job. But I don’t even know what the criteria for being a good doula would be except you have to pass your exams. According to some people, it’s being paid to do that. (I don’t- I volunteer at the Hillbrow Midwifes Obstetrics Unit). According to others, it’s being paid and you do private births at birth centers or home births. And then some folks think that if you are a doula, no matter if you obtained qualifications and certification, well, then, you’re a doula. You at a birth and you work your magic. But if you go by that logic, then isn’t most women doulas? I mean, wouldn’t you consider your best friend to be a doula of some sorts?
3. How would you even live a life without wanting anything? How do you motivate yourself?
What kind of a life would you live if you did things only because you had to and not because you wanted to? If you get rid of the “I want”, how would you motivate yourself?
I don’t really have any answers, so I apologize if you’ve made it this far and thought that you were going to have some kind of epiphany. I’m not very good at epiphanies, anyway. I don’t think I’ve had one since I was about 21 and even then, it was kind of a weird one. I decided to stop my articles at the NCB and start working in advertising because it looked like more fun than sitting with 50 cases on my desk.
I do think that it’s important to find the balance between wanting and not-wanting, and I think that it’s hard not to fall into any of the tricky traps that desire sets up for you.
PS- I really feel different with violet hair. Weird. I know