While I've been running low on actual dates here the last few weeks (okay, who I am kidding, I've been running on empty), I have not run out of things to do. My calendar has literally been overflowing with activities, events, and other fun pastimes keeping me awake and alive. But, it wasn't always like this...
For a very long time, entirely too long now that I look back, I spent my weekdays shuttling back and forth to work with the occasional extracurricular activity planned for after-work hours. Maybe I'd meet a friend for dinner after work...that was about the extent. My weekends were full of spontaneous retail jaunts and semi-occasional road trips. At the time, this was just my life. Don't get me wrong, I have always been exceptionally blessed with a multitude of friends, but I kind of figured that they'd all gone on to different things in their lives and they'd see me when they got the chance. In the meantime, I'd just live the life that was handed to me.
About three months ago (about the time that I really started filling you in with blog posts, rants and raves), I decided that I was tired of sitting by, idly waiting for people to contact me and ask me to do things. I started looking for things to do (remember my attempt at a painting class? That was just the beginning.). I started contacting people that I'd kind of put on the back burner for years, at the time using the excuse that they were just too busy to be bothered with me. I tested that theory and started writing to old friends asking if they wanted to do a certain fun activity I'd stumbled across. I rekindled old friendships and (thank God) most of them picked up exactly where they'd left off. Just goes to show that I have some phenomenal people as friends. I stopped saying "maybe" to requests and started saying "yes." And started having fun. I started doing things that I wanted to do regardless of who joined me. If someone couldn't go, I'd ask someone else or even (shockingly!) go by myself.
And then something wonderful happened. People that I hadn't even contacted myself came out of the woodwork. New people, old people...tons of people. All of them wanting to hang out or reconnect or chat or instant message. So many that I seem to have misplaced my time management skills and often times overbook myself. I get to the end of the week and think "Wow, I didn't sit still for five minutes!"
I hope that's an amaretto sour.
Don't get me wrong, I'm not expressing this change for any type of self-promotion or pat on the back for being able to attract people to my life. I'm saying it because I am completely blown away at how one little step can turn into a giant leap in a completely opposite direction. The path of my life took a major u-turn a couple of months ago, and I'm enjoying the new route. Instead of sitting at home waiting for life to fall in my lap, I decided to go out and get it myself. I've never been one to wait patiently, but had gotten comfortable. I decided to put myself outside of my comfort zone. The climb up the hill was a bit steep at first and believe me, I was a little uneasy. But once I got to the top, there was a pretty nice view and eventually life did start falling into my lap. It requires less and less work from me now because I think people realize that Melanie is back on the scene. The word is out, she's here and ready to play, bring it! The caterpillar finally emerged from its cocoon and out popped a smiling Social Butterfly.
Call it "discovering your own mortality" or "quarter-life crisis" or whatever, but I think the old saying that life is too short hit home. So, everything isn't exactly the way I planned or thought it would be as I continue to spiral closer and closer to 30. Who cares? I won't expire on my birthday, so why not have fun until things do work out the way I want them to? And maybe they won't ever really be exactly the storybook that I have had in my mind all these years, but I'm sure as hell going to enjoy the journey to wherever I end up. And the more I think about it, the more I realize that I want people to be attracted to this new, fun Melanie anyway, not the boring chick who spent a Friday evening contemplating which movie to rent from Redbox (although I do love Redbox) and what time was too early to go to bed on a weekend.