Self-Motivation. I can’t express how much this is essential to any source of success in my life. If I’m waiting on the world to motivate me to achieve or reach my goals, I’m going to be sorely disappointed. The world is essentially lazy and inherently selfish. It doesn’t give a shit about me or cares whether I reach my goals or not. I may be lucky and have a friend that will be there to cheer me on, but they’re not going to hold my hand or carry me to my finish line, and I shouldn’t be so damned co-dependent or lazy to expect them to do just that. But, alas, we live in a very, very, very lazy world, or else I’m just surrounded by a bunch of lazy enablers with an excuse and diagnosis for everything.
I understand depression. I have been suffering with it most of my life, yet as with anything and everything else, I don’t let it control me. I learned a long time ago that if I wanted anything in this world, I was just going to have to get it on my own. I suppose that’s the bright side to having parents that didn’t take care of or give a shit about me, it forced me to learn to take care of and give a shit about myself. To have no one to depend on, taught me to depend on myself. To have no one to trust, I’ve learned to trust myself. As for motivation, I’ve also learned to be my own cheerleader.
Someone made a comment to me this weekend, one that at first really, really pissed me off. I know they didn’t say what they said to hurt me, but I don’t they understood the gravity of what they said because they come from a different life, a different experience, and a different generation. What am I talking about, I’m still pissed.
I’ve enjoyed some great successes in my life, and I’m very proud of them. But, I want to make one thing very, very, very clear. NONE of it was handed to me, and NONE of it just fell in my lap by luck, birth, circumstances, etc. NONE of it.
The comment that set me off was, “You’ve had a very lucky life. What I wouldn’t do to have one-tenth of the opportunities you’ve had; you’ve received many of the things I only dream about. Some people have all the luck.” It was clear this person doesn’t know shit about me. YES, I’ve accomplished a lot of things, and some of those things are huge accomplishments, but not one of them just “fell in my lap”. I have fought like hell and sacrificed more than I can ever give account to receive each and every one of them.
My degree? My stomach pitches when I think of how many days I practically starved to death because the two jobs I worked paying for every book, every class, daycare for my kids, diapers, rent to the dumpy trailer I lived, gas and repairs to piece of shit car I had at the time, sleeping only 2-3 hours a day, splitting a box of macaroni with my babies because that’s all I could afford to eat often forgoing a bite for myself to make sure they had enough, juggling to pay either the rent, lights, water or gas for that month, crying myself to sleep feeling like the worst mother in the world because daycare or babysitters or terrible family members were raising my kids instead because I was so busy just trying to survive. But, yeah… that degree just fell in my lap because I’m a privileged white girl that just had the world handed to her. I didn’t have student loans or parents to fall back on. I had ME. Only ME.
My publications? No one saw the years of writing stories late in the night because it was an inconvenience for everyone else, it wasn’t practical, just years and years and years writing stories that no one ever read. No one saw the hours and hours and hours spent helping others with their work, editing, critiquing, encouraging, watching them one by one go off to gain success and then forget I ever existed. The years of ghost-writing for other people, never being able to take credit for the hard work I’ve done. The marketing, the networking, spending many, many, many late nights barely able to keep my eyes open going over my work, editing, editing, editing, writing, writing, writing, and busting my ass making sure that everyone I met, everywhere I went, everything I did would bring attention to my work. Submitting and submitting, receiving rejection after rejection. Getting one little writing job after the next, after the next, after the next. No one saw the shit ton of money I spent out of my own pocket on bookmarks, websites, entrance fees into festivals, marketing materials, ads, etc, etc. No, my success just fell in my lap because I’m lucky. I sure as fuck didn’t earn any of the nominations or awards.
My dedication? I once had these two authors I was trying to help become published and successful, because I believed in them and thought they were very talented. I believe both blame me today for their lack of success. For a very long time I spent so much of MY time, MY money, and MY effort trying to promote them, ignoring my own work, but I couldn’t get them to promote themselves. They had some fucking lame-brained idea that they were so talented that success was just going to fall in their lap without any effort on their part. They were too good to even make any personal appearances; they were gifted artists, after all, akin to the Cormac McCarthy’s and Charles Bukowski’s of the world. They obviously believed I didn’t work for my success either or else riding on my coat-tails would grant them the success the easy way. I fought for them until I found out I had cancer, and then I didn’t give a shit anymore. I don’t think either of them have done anything still to promote themselves, but I really don’t care. I can’t believe for them, and bottom line, they have to have their own self-motivation. I had this other writer that I spent more than a year helping her write her auto-biography, but when a better opportunity came along, none of the work I had done mattered.
Healthy Living? Beautiful Face? Oh, yeah… I’m lucky. The one-hundred and thirty pounds I’ve lost, and maintained for nearly 10 years, that was lucky too. It sure hell doesn’t require a regular workout routine, a regular diet of healthy living, having to say no to temptations, being disciplined, getting myself up at 5am every morning, pushing through the pain, or learning how to say no to the donuts. Nah, it’s my genetics. I just wake up this beautiful on my own because I’m lucky. My muscles don’t hurt, my back doesn’t ache, my joints don’t scream at me, and my eyes just automatically pop open on their own. Hell, my workout outfit dresses me every morning, not the other way around. There are lots of excuses I can use to stay in bed longer, to avoid the treadmill, and feed my pity, or pop a pill for every little ache and pain. For those mother-fuckers who think a surgery lost this weight and maintained the loss for me, you keep telling your fat-asses that. It shows your ignorance and your dependency on excuses. My surgery saved my life, but it had nothing to do with my weight loss or the maintenance of my health… which is all self-motivation and sheer determination. Surgery doesn’t make someone walk away from the doughnuts, no more than an insulin shot keeps someone from eating sugar. But, hey… we are an excuse generation. There’s a million and one reasons WHY we CAN’T do something.
So, here I am this morning. I still have 10-20 holiday pounds to shed, still got a blog to write, still got dreams to chase, still got a job to work, still got a life to live. Who’s going to open those doors for me? Nobody. But, that’s okay because you know what? I know how to open my own fucking doors. What a concept!!!!!!! You know what? I am lucky. I’m lucky that I have a mind of my own, a will of my own, and self-determination all of my own. I know so many depraved mother-fuckers out there that can’t even get their asses out of bed because they’re too busy feeling sorry for themselves, and they blame the world for their lack of success. God, I’m so lucky I’m not one of them.
Till next time,