If I can't be perfect, then I wish to be a hermit, never having to interact with others. That way I won't need to fuss over relationships and I can just think and create and be without interference or the resulting insecurities of dealing with the outside world. My mother thinks this is why I gravitate toward writing.
A commencement speaker at my alma mater once said
"Remember, you cannot be both young and wise. Young people who pretend to be wise to the ways of the world are mostly just cynics. Cynicism masquerades as wisdom, but it is the farthest thing from it. Because cynics don't learn anything. Because cynicism is a self-imposed blindness, a rejection of the world because we are afraid it will hurt us or disappoint us."And I think this speaks to me somehow, especially when I begin to feel insecure about taking a stand on things that later turn out to seem ridiculous, even to myself. As I grow older and my desire/capability to peace-keep and pacify increases, I not only abandon my own opinions, I devalue them. But seeing everything as relative is sort of a cop-out, right?
I've set up camp on sides of arguments that have later seemed immature, ignorant or just plain wrong. But I cared about something. I mean, I cared about it enough to express a concrete thought and a definitive opinion. And that is a good thing, to care enough that it is worth formulating some sort of conclusion. To think about what is happening around me. Even if I am wrong, its good practice and it creates space for a productive dialogue (possibly influencing someone else to formulate a better articulated stance). And, if I acknowledge that the process is flawed, I have the ability to be objective to whatever degree and see my own opinions as a gray area on a vast continuum of morality.
It would be too much to hope that I will always (ever) come off as intelligent, wise or even informed - but I am proud of myself that in whatever small way, I continue to be interested in what's happening around me. I don't agree with everything I said 5 years ago, but I do think its cool that I, for whatever reason, felt compelled to express those thoughts.
Now, if you will excuse me, I have two sick children who will be needing my attention at 7am. Time to force sleep!