Saturday, November 20, 2010

i do this thing....

i slipped up. and momentarily let a friend down.

but before i get to that, a word about this thing i do.

so i truly believe i can be beneficial to the world, that we all can. and i'm not talking recycling, which is very beneficial btw. i'm talking more immediate, smaller scale. it's a lot easier than we think.

when i lived in buffalo, i organized a twelve street, thirty-six block, 150 member Community Collaborative. we sponsored mass daffodil plantings with the help of a City Parks official, donated and wrapped gifts for neighborhood families at the holidays, sponsored student/resident neighborhood clean-ups, turned vacant lots turned into community gardens, held a massive thirty block street sale, and planted 149 new trees in the neighborhood. and it all began with the simple act of me sticking “let’s start a block club” flyers in my neighbor’s doors.

but here's the thing...i know i can make things better, but then i spend the whole duration of the time doing it, being completely, utterly, overwhelmed.

i do this all the time. it’s especially bad when mixed with this other thing i do, in which my imagined sense of fun ignores what is actually fun. watch your puppy and kitten in my tiny apartment for three weeks so you can go get married? sure no problem, i can help. need someone to housesit your geriatric dog for ten days so you can travel out of town? sounds great. it’s only when kitty litter is splayed all over my floor, the puppy’s breath smells of poo and the geriatric dog is barking me awake at 5 a.m. that i begin to question my judgment.

needless to blog, i did it again. one of my best friends is in need and i offered her, and her two young babes, a place to stay. only when she took me up on it, did i remember that i live in a very tiny apartment, with lots of cords, things on the floor, open shelving and no bathtub. my friend and i spoke on the phone and she could hear the panic in my voice. what was worse, i could hear it in hers. i'd thrown her a lifeline and was pulling it back just before it reached her. i instantly felt ashamed.

the thing is, just because it’s scary and a little uncomfortable to step outside our normal, it doesn’t mean we shouldn’t. isn’t that what makes life cool? that when we attempt to steer it and not just ride shotgun, we’re forced to feel the exhilaration of driving? i think so. and even though i chide myself repeatedly for my judgment, and will grumble about them once accepted (i’m the grumbling sort, i can’t help it), i don't regret a single one of my “i can help with this” impulses. trite, i know, but true.

except for that geriatric dog sitting thing. that was a stupid decision, period.

so i’m sorry for the faintness of heart, my dear friend. please forgive me and bring those girlies. we'll have a crazy, messy, sleep-deprived, awesome time together. and i promise this time, there won't be a speck of overwhelmed in sight.

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