A few months ago, on a normal phone chat with my brother he informed me that “we think your life is boring” (the we in that statement being him and my parents). I was probably complaining about something or basically had no updates about new things in my life because nothing is new, so just know that his comment kind of fit in the conversation.
Still, my feelings were hurt. It actually hurt my feelings way more than it should have and definitely more than he intended it to. He had no idea that I’d be so sensitive to something he said off-the-cuff.
My brother one of my favorite people in the world and he is my best friend. I can’t tell you when the last time he hurt my feelings was because it’s a rare occurence. We’ve always gotten along. We’ve always been close. So maybe that’s why it stung so much. Or maybe it’s because he was a little bit right.
The thing is, I’m not bored of my life. Inside I felt like screaming – I’m happy! I go places! I do things!
And honestly, I could see my fun-loving, 24-year-old brother finding me boring. My alcohol tolerance is much less than it used to be and I regularly fall asleep on the couch before 11pm. I’m in a stable relationship and nearly every conversation I have at some point includes my dog. So sure, to him, I’m boring.
But I freaked a little. It was hard to not take a look at my life and wonder, is this it?
Some days it feels like I’m in Groundhog Day. Wake, work, home, cook, eat, walk Archie, workout, shower, watch TV with N, read, sleep. Repeat. Repeat again. Our life in the suburbs is comfortable. It almost pains me to say that I’m content with it. Should I be content with a life so ordinary? I’m in my twenties. I should be doing more! Shouldn’t I? Exploring the world, adventuring, doing all the things that we won’t be able to do once kids are in the picture. Maybe that is just the pressure put on people my age. But for the most part, that just isn’t the way real life works.
Since my brother told me this, I’ve felt an overwhelming need to prove that my life is, in fact, not boring at all. Not just to them, but to myself. I began actively filling our weekends with fun things. Suddenly we had our weekends booked up through October with trips to California (two!), time spent it Philly, DC, and New York, a music festival, a broadway show, and then the big one – moving to the city.
I know in some part, that one little statement played a role in us moving to the city. It’s definitely a part of why I want to move to the city – so I’m not boring Nadine in the suburbs with her totally regular, boring life. Perhaps he hit a nerve, uncovered my ultimate fear. What if I die and everything about my entire life was completely regular? Would that be the ultimate failure? It feels like it.
Maybe his words were a weird blessing. They’ve forced me to not only do more exciting things, but to share the things I do with my family more. I was certainly guilty of not sharing some of the cool things I do with them. Although now I’m sure I’m braggy mcbraggy pants like – LOOK AT ME DOING ALL THE COOL THINGS. I guess it’s also a testament to the power of words, especially the power of your words to the people you care about.
So maybe that one statement changed the course of my life a bit; changed how I view my life. I’m not boring. And if I am, I’m trying really hard not to be.