Upon receiving some news from a completely accurate and reliable Facebook application, i now know that i will probably be reincarnated as a PANDA. The good news is that i’ll be cute and have unlimited access to Chinese food. The bad news is that i won’t necessarily play well with others.

Reincarnation is an interesting idea, but most of my knowledge of it is based on Dead Again and Chances Are, so we’re not really going to talk about that. What i AM going to talk about is our fascination with NEW BEGINNINGS. Religion, philosophy, and surprise makeovers are all about a new beginning. A fresh start. A rebirth. The earliest influence of new beginnings in my own personal life was the Christian analogy of being “born again”. (Let’s not talk about how i hate religious jargon right now. We’ll save that for later.) You change your aim in life and your focus changes and it changes you and you are better off for it. In fact, this change SAVES you. That’s pretty much the suggested route of salvation in a nutshell. But i think it’s also true for a surprise makeover.

I’m one of those people who is addicted to new beginnings. I’m addicted to the idea that “X” will happen and then i will “Y” and, in conclusion, “X + Y= AWESOME NEW LIFE”. The problem with this line of thinking is that i shouldn’t wait for “X” before i “Y”. I should be able to “Y” every minute of every day. Why don’t i “Y” right now? What am i afraid of? Am i afraid that “Y” won’t be enough? What if i have to “Y” twice? What if i have to “Z”?! I DO NOT HAVE THE NECESSARY EQUIPEMENT TO “Z”!!! I can come up with a million excuses as to why i shouldn’t “Y” right now.

Some people are risk takers. Some people are me. I could tell you that my resolution this year is to take risks, but that would probably be a lie. I’m not sure that i have that in me, much less the ability to bring it to the surface on demand. Yesterday, when discussing a novel and it’s influence, a friend said:

“It’s all about story. What’s yours? Are YOU writing your story? Is someone else?”

These questions, in the context of discussing the novel in question, could bring about many more questions and different ideas, but i’ll tell you my gut reaction was simply an immediate “STOP WRITING MY STORY”! If this is what it comes down to, i fear i may be letting those around me write my story. The strange thing is that i won’t take my OWN risks for my OWN story, but i’ll follow you into YOURS… which, in a strange way, almost makes me the biggest risk taker of all. But also the laziest.


Not impressive.

I’m still thinking about what i’ll be “Y”ing come this “X” of midnight, so perhaps tomorrow i’ll let you know what you can expect from me in the coming year. For now, i’ll tell you what will NOT be happening come this stroke of midnight.


  • I will NOT be listening to Linda Eder singing A New Life on repeat.
  • I will NOT be watching Love Actually.
  • I will NOT, in fact, be engaging in ANYTHING that will make me cry.
  • I will NOT be thinking about that chocolate waterfall of hepatitis at Golden Corral. (Seriously, because ew.)
  • I will NOT be staring at my hands and wondering how fingers this chubby can type. (Because i’m doing that now to get it out of the way)

I think that covers all the major bases. Let’s face it, there’s a fairly good chance i’ll stay in tonight, continue this Northern Exposure marathon, and be sitting here writing in this blog while contemplating my new life as a panda.


5 responses

  1. Sometimes, the things you say are so astutely complex, I have to read them several times. For one day, I want to be able to think like you think.

    “The strange thing is that i won’t take my OWN risks for my OWN story, but i’ll follow you into YOURS… which, in a strange way, almost makes me the biggest risk taker of all.”

    That resonated (resonates) so much for me, I had to read it about five times.

    And just food for thought: I take a lot of risks. The last major one I took landed me here. And in hindsight, WHAT THE FUCK WAS I THINKING?

    And risk-taking is a lonely business. My risk taking has lead me into a nomadic, gypsy-like life. It’s lonely and solitary. Are there adventures? So many.

    But they are all by myself.

    1. I know a lot of people who, even though they’d love to have a partner in their risk taking, are far more driven by the sense of adventure. I admire that amazing gusto! But i’m definitely more of the wind beneath your wings type. Support is a natural position for me. FLYING is NOT. 🙂
      When you begin to feel lonely and solitary in your own environment, it makes leaving to start a crazy adventure a lot easier. I hope that next time you settle down and make a home, you’ll never want to leave again.

  2. Very relateable post Carrie. Growing up overseas I was thrown up against a lot of risk takers that were also SAVING THE WORLD. The stakes were high. Only in the last few years have I figured out that that’s just NOT me. It will never be me. Not that I don’t love living overseas and miss it, but I find for my sanity companionship is much better for me. So I eat at ethnic restaurants and try to stay connected (without getting overwhelmed) with what’s happening in the world. This year it dawned on me that my true goal in life is to be at peace and/or happy. Because a happier/ at peace Jenny gets a lot more done and is much nicer to be around then a stressed, whiny “what the hell is wrong with me that I’m not living in a developing country saving lives” Jenny. Sorry for such a long comment post! Love you!!!

    1. Jenny, it’s ok that you’re not saving lives overseas… beause sometimes you’re saving mine right here. 🙂

      1. That’s so sweet Carrie 🙂 I want to hang out with you soon!!

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