Please Fix Me
I’m going to get uncharacteristically serious for a moment here.
Of course, my title is facetious. I don’t want anyone to fix me. It isn’t that I think there to be absolutely nothing wrong with me – I have a little too much poundage in my ass, drink way too much Diet Coke, and am probably depressed. But anything in my life that I want to or am ready to make changes on, I do so to better myself – not to fix a damn thing.
I might be getting ahead of myself again.
A few weeks ago I was at a book club meeting and talking to a new member about homeschooling. She’s a teacher and – while she acknowledged that it sounds like we are at least a year to a year-and-a-half ahead of state standards (which we are), she still felt it her duty to “fix” the situation and urge me to get back on board with compulsory schools. Not only was this typical of most Californians (butting their noses in where it does not belong), but this complete stranger took the stance as if she had a right to “fix” our situation – implying there was something wrong.
There is nothing wrong with the homeschooling I do. There is also nothing wrong with the poundage in my ass or the amount of Diet Coke I drink.
After New Years, I realized that resolutions are just that – an attempt to fix who we are, as if deep down inside we are ultimately wrong. Objectively, I am sure there is a lot that could be considered wrong. I’m sure the poundage in my ass is wrong by certain standards. The Diet Coke I drink is wrong because it is rooted in my addiction to caffeine. All the overindulgence people did at the Super Bowl was wrong by a whole host of standards too. But in some sense, if this is who we are, why are we always trying to fix ourselves?
My point, here, is that you only fix something that is bad or wrong. Perhaps the most egregious thing we do is talk endlessly about what is wrong with what we do. While I believe there is a balance to be had – people should not overindulge, binge, do drugs, harm others, etc., saying that we need to fix who we are is no better than the things we do that make us that to begin with.
In other words, our language is all screwy again. If someone wants to make a positive change in their life – eat healthier, lose weight, seek out a new job opportunity, etc – we should not be referring to it as “fixing” anything. Fixing implies there is a problem, and to claim that who we are is a problem is perhaps the greatest error we make.
More importantly, we should stop trying to fix each other. Stop trying to shove our ideologies down other people’s throats. Stop trying to overwhelm people with skewed statistics, irrelevant commentaries, and unsolicited advice. At the end of the day, the only one that is accountable for decisions made, and the only one that has to live the life that is being lived, is the individual. Everyone else should just butt out.
For one day, rather than looking at ourselves as things that need to be fixed, we should all try to reflect on what we like about our lives and who we are. If there are things we don’t like, well then make positive changes. But life isn’t about what other people say or what other people want. The only thing that really needs fixing is this attitude that life is about anyone other than ourselves.
And with that, I’m done being serious. Back to talking about hillbillies and hipsters, sluts and blow jobs in nail salons. This is something my family always says I should fix too, by the way – my foul language, my humor, my crassness. Is there really anything wrong with that, though? Laughing at absurdity and saying things for what they are, rather than what they are not? It seems sometimes the things we think need fixing are really the things that keep us sane. In a world of chaos, judgment, drama, and pain, sometimes it is the things that we try to fix that are what keep us afloat.