I love the movie Hope Floats. It’s one of my favorites, particularly for the moment where the main character says, “You know, I always thought I was gonna be, I don’t know, special. But I’m not. I’m just… I’m just an ordinary person.”
Because I relate to that moment. I live in that moment. I am that moment.
I think one of the hardest things about getting older is that very realization. At least for me. Maybe it’s not for everyone. Madonna probably never felt that way. But I do.
It’s not that I think I’m worthless or empty or meaningless. It’s just that I’m not extraordinary. Well, not to anyone beyond my family. My husband thinks I’m extraordinary. My kids do, too. But their perception is colored with love. And the sugar buzz that comes from the cookies I make them. According to the rest of the world, I’m average. And that’s okay. Most of the time.
There are some days, I wish I was more. Better.
For the past 8 months, I’ve been teaching on Monday mornings. Today, I’m not. I had only taught 30 Mondays out of the 1,716 or so I’ve lived. Maybe it’s silly, but I’m heartbroken. I guess that’s a testament to how much it meant to me. Even Dave’s offer to wake up with the girls to give me a sleep-in day couldn’t make up for what I was missing. All it gave me was the privacy to have a little cry.
I still teach on Saturday. In fact, one of my Monday students will now be coming on Saturday and I even have some new kids starting my new session this weekend. But, I can’t help but feel like a failure for the ones that chose not to come back.
If only my skill for teaching matched my love for doing it.
Maybe it’s not simply the realization that I’m ordinary that’s hard to accept. It’s the fact that I’m ordinary despite my best efforts.
There’s a strange comfort in the delusion that, “I could do it if I applied myself.” There’s no comfort whatsoever in, “I did my best and it wasn’t enough.”
I did my best and it wasn’t enough. Fuck. That sucks.
I’m putting The Immaculate Collection on shuffle and doing a fake Madonna concert in my bathroom.