While I do eat sushi for dinner and pancakes for breakfast, sometimes I prefer to flip the script and do things in ways that work better for me. I can use the protein first thing in the morning as energy and I can use the carbs in the evening to help me crash out to sleep, for example.
Sometimes, I try things I’ve never done before. This is all Carrie Fisher’s fault. After Carrie died, I read all her books. And one of the things I learned from her memoirs was that you don’t have to what is expected or traditional. Some rules are meaningless, like sushi is for any meal but breakfast and pancakes are for breakfast and no other (except for maybe brunch.)
Side note: brunch is the best meal of the day.
Because of Carrie, I tried things I thought I wouldn’t like.
A list of things I tried for the first time or the first time in a long time since April 2017.
- Watched all the Star Wars movies (first time!) [I did this mostly because I hated not understanding most of Carrie’s jokes in “The Princess Diarist”.]
- Watched all the Marvel Cinematic Universe movies, and the Netflix shows, and the Fox, Hulu and Freeform shows (first time!)
- Started reading comic books (with the exception of a single reading of Sandman: Season of Mists in 1995-ish, I had never done that before)
- Read speculative and science fiction (with the exception of reading Hitchiker’s Guide to the Galaxy in 1991, this was the first time I’d done that too.)
- I grew my hair out for the first time in more than 10 years.
- Took up crocheting (I gave up crocheting when I was 10, shortly after I learned the basics of single crochet)
- Moved to a bigger city. This had been a dream of mine for the past 5 years.
- Started learning about and tasting bourbons (new thing!)
- Started reading for knowledge and pleasure at least 5 days per week. (restarted a pre-internet life thing)
- Started going to live stand-up. (restarted a pre-internet life thing)
- Starting a very tentative, equipment-free, strength and balance training routine. (Unless you count my yoga mat and a stretch band as equipment.)
- Started using assistive devices to navigate the world. (This is overcoming a great disappointment in my life to do this.)
Getting to know Carrie Fisher in death has been a source of inspiration for the past 2 years. What started with watching a dozen movies brought me new friends, new connections, and a greater understanding of the culture I have lived adjacent to for most of my life but was never really part of.
I was never really part of the culture because I thought there were rules for what I was supposed to do and I was supposed to like and what was “cool” for me to be a part of.
Stay afraid, but do it anyway. What’s important is the action. You don’t have to wait to be confident. Just do it and eventually the confidence will follow.Carrie Fisher
I’m still trying to figure out what the action is. I don’t know what I want to do. I have only the vaguest idea of what I’m good at and ideas of what I could do. But what I do know is that I don’t have to do what’s expected of me because sushi can be breakfast and pancakes can be dinner or even a midnight snack.
I’m 44 years-old and I don’t have kids. I just got my first pet, and she came with a houseplant she likes to snack on. I don’t drive. The most expensive thing I own is a three-year-old Lenovo laptop. At this writing, I have barely left my apartment in 2.5 weeks. I don’t know how to cook and I really, really don’t want to learn.
By many societal expectations, I fail at “adulting”. But I realized that “adulting” is a con that’s designed to suck joy and creativity out of a human life. I’ve wished to be a grownup since I can remember and no matter what happens in this life I would not trade my middle-age for any life that made me younger than 35. Getting sick with MS made me realize just how much bullshit an adult is supposed live with in order to be seen as an upstanding member of the community.
Again, in the words of Our Lady of Perpetually Not Giving a Fuck,
In conclusion, I’m more radically anti-capitalist and fighting the patriarchy as an “old” disabled woman than I ever thought about at 25. I’m trying to find and live the best ethical life of my choosing because I realized that sushi can be for breakfast and pancakes can be for dinner. I’m more empathetic and less misanthropic because I started to question expectations.