Since I have just passed a milestone year, I am consumed with trying to define myself in concrete terms that reflect who I am as an individual. There are the adjectives I know, the adjectives I aspire to, and the adjectives I hope never to have applied to my person. When writing a eulogy, it is the adjectives that help define the person who has past and will inspire the audience to tears, or anger, or both.
Some of the adjectives I know already and come from my chosen occupation as a surgical nurse. Some are just universally applied to me by people who do not know much about me. "Kind", "helpful", "caring" come with the job and make me one of the better nurses in the field. "Smart" is usually applied to me my past teachers and some co-workers by how quickly I can pick up on new routines and how I absorb knowledge like a sponge. These adjectives I cherish because not everyone gets them for themselves and I have definitely earned them.
There are other adjectives that I long to achieve in my lifetime. Aspiring to some of these is a shallow effort and play to my vanity. I am ashamed to admit to this. One of these is "stunning". I have never had my looks called stunning. I can pull off "cute" with some effort and with a lot of effort and some drinking by the adjective giver," adorable" and "kissable" are within my grasp. Never stunning. Perhaps my lack of a gregarious nature or ease in social situations plays into this. Better diet and more exercise that I currently get would help as well. I know, all vanity, and I will say my mea culpas later. How does a Jew say mea culpa?
Another one I aspire to is "creative". I have never really had an artistic or creative outlet, at least not in many years. Dance in high school through classes and my cheerleading was the last time I tried that particular outlet. I have always wanted to take a ballroom dancing class. Just find a class, where I could show up without a partner and where no one knew me so I could learn in anonymity and not feel self-conscious. I do not think my husband would understand this, but there it is. My propensity to trip over nothing injures my pride more than anything else. I have just bought a digital camera in hopes that I could use photography as an outlet for me. Still not sure how or who I would share these photos with, probably with this blog in the future.
The adjectives I do not aspire to, but am afraid have been applied to me are "temperamental", "selfish", "thoughtless", and a few others that should not be shared in the blogosphere with out a profanity sensor. I recently gave the wide world a look into my temperament (see previous post), which I was not exceedingly proud to do. On more than one occasions, the others have been applied to me in various situations, where in an attempt to find a gracious way out, I took the easy way. also, not my shining moments.
My biggest hope is that the good outweighs the bad and the help I give outdoes the hurt I cause. I choose not to look back on anything with regret, but as a learning experience. It should all lead me to the noun I desire most, "mensch".