I decided I should let the post sit over the weekend, because I knew that there was a good chance I would eventually calm down and regret spewing vitriol all over the internet. Good call, Past Allie, because after letting it marinate for a few days, I realized that I'm not frustrated by the questions themselves. When it comes to our close friends and our families, I'm happy to talk about possibilities, and worries, and my insecurity about what comes next, even if it's all things I've said before.
Rather, I'm frustrated by the fact that a lot of my day-to-day interactions with people are only surface level, that the only things people know about me are the answers I give to these few questions, because they're the only questions anyone bothers to ask. And I'm frustrated by it because, I feel, it gives others the impression that waiting on Matt to graduate is the only thing I have going on in my life. It's not. But I don't get asked a lot of questions about how LIFE is going.
I'm keeping myself busy. I'm leaving Matt alone to do his work and making plans to do things for myself, to keep my soul happy. I'm visiting my family and taking classes and going out with friends, and someday maybe I'll tell you about all of it, because it's way more interesting than what's actually happening in my house, which is this:
Day 12: Matt is in my office writing his dissertation. He has consumed 23 Diet Cokes and four cups of coffee in the last six hours. He thinks he broke the coffeemaker. He definitely moved all my work stuff.
Day 13: Coffeemaker not broken, just leaked all over the counter. Out of Diet Coke. Elliott sleeping on a giant parka in the office. Dishes piled four feet high in the sink. Matt still writing.
Day 17: Matt wrote until 1:45 a.m. Know this because it scared me awake when he opened the door to brush his teeth and go to bed.
Cat, learn how to do some dishes.
There's this girl I see at a lot of networking events. We don't know each other well, but we work in similar fields. We're probably pretty close in age, and by all means should have things to talk about, but every time we see each other, I feel like a fake. We smile at each other, ask how business is going, laugh and say "Oh, great!" and then we find an excuse to talk to other people. I literally know nothing else about her. After this happened yet again earlier this month, I realized that I hated myself for doing that, for not asking anything else, for not knowing what to ask her.
When I was in high school and college, my dad always asked people what they liked to do for fun; a good question that has nothing to do with work. It cuts down into the part of you that people don't know about, leaving behind unimportant things like what you do to pay the bills and asks, What do you do when you're not doing what you DO? What makes you come alive? What was worth waking up for today?
So simple. What do you do for fun. I need to come up with some good questions like that. I don't want to be a surface-level person anymore. The thing that I'm really tired of? Small talk. Small talk for small minds, or what have you. I'd rather have a big, big mind.
What are your favorite questions to ask others? And while we're on the subject, what do you like to do for fun? P.S. "Blogging" is a cop-out answer. Give me something crazy that no one knows. :)