How many times have you said this aloud or to yourself? Plenty? That's about my count to. Often, this phrase is used in conjunction with a mess we perceive with our eyes: like a messy room, car, kitchen, floor, or kids (especially kids). People are, by their nature, messy beings. We make messes and we attempt to clean them up. Sometimes we succeed... sometimes we fail... sometimes we just have no idea where to start.
That last one applies to me. I've made a mess and I don't know where to start. What mess am I talking about? Ah, that mess would be myself.
(I'm going to spill my guts out on the page... you've been warned.)
Look, I'm not going to pretend that my life is in some way special or meaningful... I honestly don't know if it is (I'm leaning towards not). I have no great destiny and I certainly don't think of myself as someone who's meant to do "big things" as the phrase goes. I'm just a guy with a mess to clean up and no idea where to start.
I thought that losing weight, getting a better grasp on my health, and being more vital was a good place to start. So, last July 25th, I made the commitment to go Primal and it was a life altering experience. I have no regrets about that decision and I'm 126 pounds lighter now than I was this time last year. There's me at 266 and me at 140... and I much prefer the me at 140 (as most people do).
Losing the weight was great but it didn't exactly clean up the mess. In fact, it really just showed that the mess was MUCH bigger than I originally imagined. The mess that is me... well, being a 126 pounds less doesn't solve all problems. It solved a few but not all.
I've lost all the weight I want to lose. Standing at 140 is great for me... I'm in size 28 shorts, small t-shirts, and I'm apparently thin (I can't grasp that still). I'm healthier, more active, I get up most days at 6:30AM and I don't have many complaints as far as my body goes. I'm in better shape than most of America's population and the change I've made in my life has brought to me some interesting revelations.
But I'm still a mess. Although I'm a 126 pounds less, losing the weight has removed the layers of fat covering up the entirety of the mess... so the mess is actually bigger than before (it's been the same size all along you know but it just appears bigger to me). I hate to say I came into this thinking "If I get thinner, I can fix me" but I kinda did. I never said it aloud or in any writing but I thought it. It was a stashed away hope, the kind you don't talk about because you don't want to jinx it.
Well... that strategy didn't really work out.
And now I'm left with the question "What next?" I mean, the weight loss thing was the focus, the goal, the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow and now I feel like a loser for believing it was there in the first place. It was too easy to believe but I believed it... and now with my weight loss over with I find myself knowing LESS than I did this time last year.
Being 126 pounds less has destroyed nearly 13 years worth of data on WHO and WHAT I was... I was the fat guy, my role socially was to be the jolly fat guy-the comic relief. I was the geek who had no shot of getting a girl and no amount of money, fame, or fortune would have ever changed that. I was locked in to that role... I had a lifetime membership to a Twinkies factory for goodness sake.
And now all that has evaporated right before my eyes and I'm left knowing not what to do with myself socially or in life or... anything. I got nothing except the mess I've created. All those assumptions I lived with for years on end I cemented into my mind as fact, never to be changed, and now those facts have crumbled.
Dust to dust, as they say. So what now? What next? I don't know where to start. I have social fears and reservations that are deep seeded... I'm better at cleaning, laundry, and cooking (baking and breakfast primarily) than cutting anything. I can build things but they're not level, not straight, and certainly not appealing to the eye.
My skills do not have much demand. Further, I find myself questioning my existence... what's my point in being here, exactly? I have my suspicions but every time I start to think "Oh, it's this one" the good Lord decides to shut the door and I find myself back in the infinite maze of possibilities.
I've been asked, countless times, what I want to do with my life. I don't know. I know it sounds hard to believe but believe me, if I had an inkling I'd let someone know... but I got nothing. My radar is dead, my sensors have failed, I have no reception, and I'm blinded by the supposed "freedom" I enjoy that others envy.
Don't envy it. It really isn't what it's made out to be.
So, bottom line, I'm a mess. Some days I look at myself in the mirror and I feel like breaking the face in the mirror. Not the healthiest thing I'm sure, but it's the feeling I get. Where do I start cleaning up this mess? At what point do I just shrug my shoulders and walk away?
Questions, I have. Answers, I have none. I'm taking things a day at a time and I'm diving into the best materials I have available to find an answer, one answer, to the many questions I have. I'm reading Plato's Republic (and taking extensive notes) and I'm beginning a bible study (also taking extensive notes). Plato and the Bible seem like good places to start researching my many questions.
But there's no guarantee that I'll find any answers... or even if I do find answers, I doubt I'll like them. I just want them at this point, I could care less if I like them or not.
I've been looking into meditation too... seriously, I have. Maybe some yoga if I can figure out how to pull it off (without pulling something).
I know my flaws: those have been readily apparent for years. I'm stubborn, prideful, and take things to extremes that no one should take them to. Those three things have been responsible for the bulk of my problems and the current mess that is myself. I know that.
I'm not concerned with fixing those things so much as cleaning up the mess they caused.
That mess won't be cleaned up anytime soon I feel. Which means tomorrow the morning will start off the same as every morning. I wake up, I look in the mirror, and I say to myself...
Yikes... What a Mess!