If you care to join me for tea, I can’t peer into your cup to read the leaves and tell you your future. I have however, been known to ponder the age old question, “Is the cup half empty or half full?”
I’ve never thought of myself as a pessimist. Give me bad news and my first inclination is to look for a silver lining. However, if there’s no silver to be found, I certainly don’t expect a knight in shining armour to come in and save the day. If something needs saving, I procrastinate, whine a little and then pour myself a stiff drink, suit up and go get it done.
But perhaps I’m confusing what an optimist is. Let’s start again.
Full Definition of optimism. 1 : a doctrine that this world is the best possible world. 2 : an inclination to put the most favorable construction upon actions and events 3 : to anticipate the best possible outcome.
Well my world really is a wonderful place. I’m pretty sure that I live in the best possible country in the best possible home. More importantly it’s filled with the best possible people; my very favourite people. People make all the difference.
I always believe in the best of people. I believe in giving the benefit of the doubt and offering a helping hand. Even though I’ve been accused of being naïve and a bleeding heart (In a family of conservatives, that actually goes hand in hand with being an NDP supporter) I just feel like we are all beautiful flowers. Some are practical and hardy while others are exotic and fragile but we are all needed to make the best possible garden. If someone has been placed in conditions where they can’t bloom, there’s no point in placing blame. Everybody deserves the opportunity to thrive…but I’m getting a little carried away with the gardening metaphor. Truth be told, in real life, my gardening style is less ‘leave no man behind’ and more ‘survival of the fittest’. I very often allow plants to die under my less than careful watch but I think that’s because plants are so quiet…if they could just ask for water, well maybe not just ask, but shout a little so I could hear them over the chaos of our household, I would give it to them… eventually… but I digress. The thing is, I think I’m rocking this definition…best possible world, and an inclination for putting a positive spin on things; 2 for 2 ain’t bad.
Number 3 trips me up. To anticipate the best possible outcome. Not so much.
Which doesn’t really make any sense. Life has been kind. If life was a gardener, not only have I been given sunlight, water and space to grow, she has also been kind enough to fertilize and talk to me and prune away the dead heads… and let’s face it, who has time for that? But I still worry. All the time. I expect life to be lurching around corners and hiding behind trees, ready to pounce on me when I least expect it. As my responsibility grows and I march down this path leading a family that counts on me, I chant to myself, “constant vigilance”. And yet it’s not like life has ever really harmed me. Like an annoying big brother that creeps up on you from behind to yell “BOO”, life just punches me in the shoulder with a smirk and says “made you flinch” . And I do. Flinch. Every time.
Does that make me a pessimist? Isn’t it just good common sense to flinch when life comes hurtling at you at top speed. And life does move fast.
I drive my family crazy when I’m in charge of the remote. I constantly pause action movies at critical moments to give everyone a chance to take a deep breath and make the right decision. I allow the fictional movie characters the opportunity that I’m denied. My family fails to appreciate my sacrifices. In fact, my remote control privileges have been revoked. The point is, life doesn’t have a pause button and my personality type doesn’t do well on the fly.
And it’s not that I don’t think really. I actually think too much. So many thoughts, all the time that there’s bound to be a traffic jam on the way out of my mouth. It’s why I appreciate blogging so much. It’s an opportunity to converse with the added bonus of being able to edit out all (some?) of the crazy. To answer the question (look for it, it’s way up there), I’m not sure that’s it poor judgement to be prepared. If it’s good enough for a boy scout, it’s good enough for me.
So maybe “I’m not a pessimist, I’m a realist.” yet somehow I don’t think a person who talks to herself online qualifies as a realist. Providing crisis management to fictional characters by pausing action movies probably doesn’t help my case either. I also helpfully shout advice at the screen. (I am no longer allowed to watch movies in public)
Maybe it doesn’t matter. Labels are for clothing, not people. Maybe I should stop staring into the cup and just drink it. Maybe, with a little alcohol 😉
Ingredients For Boozy Blueberry Tea
Mix amaretto and grand marnier in a brandy snifter or glass. Add hot tea to taste. Garnish with an orange.
Nobody realizes that some people expend tremendous energy merely to be normal~Albert Camus