Posted by: shellyweave | April 24, 2010

the art of peanut butter and jelly sandwiches

Before I jump into the discussions that will be head spinning, or write up a brainy, well-to-do blog that raises questions on worldly debates, I think I will start off simple (after all, I do not plan on winning a Pulitzer for my blog writes).

I woke up this morning thinking about today’s blog, wondering, “What have we gotten ourselves into?” It is only my second attempt on blogging and I was already panic-stricken and frightfully nervous that what I would have to say would turn out to be a paragraph about the art of making a sandwich– or something along those lines. I thought, “I have done NOTHING in the past few days that would be of any interest to an outside reader. Who wants to hear about my days at school, or the books I’m reading? Frankly, nobody cares.” I even pondered skipping today because, well, I thought I had nothing to say. So, I put off writing until now. And, after many attempted drafts, and multiple unclear ideas that had no definite point, I feared that I might, after all, start rambling about the craft of peanut butter and jelly creations, but, that got me thinking– don’t over analyze. It’s something I was born with, this quality of over analytical thinking. I believe I earned it from my mother who overly crafts everything that she does–but, that makes the products of what she does so beautiful.

Since birth, I think (because I wasn’t yet a fully developed, thinking, analyzing being) I have harbored this quality, but not until around age 5 or 6 did it start showing its full effects; this was the age I started gaining more freedoms. At first, it started off small. I remember one of the first shopping trips I went on with my mother and sister that I was able to start picking out my own clothes (previously, it was mainly my mother’s choice). I took over an hour deciding which article of clothing would best make my life happy. I had my mom hold out each piece of clothing that I tried on, and I listed off things I liked about each as well as things I didn’t like. Obviously, my mother tried to be patient, but I ended up choosing whatever she suggested and went through the long check-out line, only to go back and retrieve the previous article of clothing I had discarded. After I returned home, I was certain I had made the wrong decision. I over analyzed what was the best option for me, and made myself insanely distraught, even to the point of tears. This scenario played through several times in my childhood and the problems did not stop there. Barbies, toys, shoes, accessories. The issue of over analyzing only accelerated. I had to be sure I got the option I wanted that held the best benefit for me.

As I got older, the problem became not only clothes and shoes, but expanded to being boys or other troubling agendas like friends and enemies, grades and activities. In my head, although I may not have shown it, I was thinking through each and every possibility– Was he cute? Did his cuteness matter? Why would he like me anyway? Should I fight with her or ask for forgiveness? How will this benefit me? How will it hurt me? Is this something I want to say I experienced? Over time (after the oh-so-dramatic Jr. High years) this developed into the making of pro’s and con’s lists. Today, I like to think I can almost make a decision quickly, but as of yet, still not without the guidance of a good old P&C list.

Shelly can vouch for me on this one. I doubt there has been a time when I have had a “crisis” in our 3 years of friendship that I have not held Shelly hostage with snacks, beverages and a good play list to analyze the crisis situation. The kidnapping always goes something like this:

1. Retell the story of my latest dilemma to Shelly.

2. Go over the problem area once more, making sure she understands my intense freaking-outed-ness.

3. Have her tell me what to do.

4. Refute whatever she says, and remind her of the problem’s urgency asking her for a new solution.

5. After her new solution is brought to the table, I agree, but then doubt myself for the next 5 days (making a total of 5 plus P&C’s), then consistently bringing up the “issue” in every other sentence wondering if I should do what Shelly and I discussed.

If this isn’t the epitome of an over analytical personality, I don’t know what is.

The reason I am discussing my aggravating analytical side is because, well, everyone has one. Although my analytical side may be on the far end of the spectrum, everyone has something that makes them question what is best for them. Nobody can be completely sure all of the time. So, I need to remember that although, making a decision and sticking to it has always been one of my weaknesses (many times just leaving me sitting at home with a notebook full of P&C lists that have in no way actually helped me) I shouldn’t let the pro’s and con’s or the doubts of the situation dissuade me. If I make the wrong decision, I should embrace it and let it define the person I am becoming–that is something I think I need to work on. I need to let go of the security of trying to analyze which outcome best suits me and just let those dilemmas happen. If I buy a shirt that ends up being the wrong fit for me, I will give it to someone who needs it. If I say something stupid to my latest boy-crush, I will hold my head high and just laugh about it. Making the wrong decision isn’t the end of the world and I think I need to let some of my analytical personality go. Don’t get me wrong, I will still be clinging to those P&C’s, but maybe letting the specific decision of the moment fester in my mind won’t be on my agenda. So, although Shelly may not be ready to give up her hoarding habit in hopes of remembering the days of her youth that mean so much to her, I am ready to give up some of my analytical being. I will be more decisive and less second-guessing because of analytics. Don’t misinterpret me, I still will do what is best and what is most smart, but, I won’t analyze the effects as much. I won’t let my analysis rule me, but I will rule my analysis.

So, in the end, I didn’t end up stating the arts and crafts of how to make a PB&J. I don’t know if what I did come up with is any better, I mean, the above advice does leave me hungry and without something to snack on but, it does give the internet some insight into me (as Shelly stated, SCARY).

Blog two, down and what feels like an infinite amount of blogs to go.

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