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  • Writer's pictureAmy Lehpamer

rut n roll

this was first posted on my ol' blog on June 14th, 2017 #vintage

"Do something each day that scares you"

My thought when I read this on posters in sub par cafes or on Lululemon bags is FUCK OFF.

An Australian translation would be "get amongst it", and I suppose it's all derivative of "Carpe Diem". However it's expressed, the reality is I'm allergic to the concept. The allergy presents itself in deep sighs, audible to my partner from across the room, aggressive nail biting and a very defensive tone.

I don't like doing things that scare me. I don't like to be scared. I avoid compromising situations. In my case these situations vary from loud clubs to dog parks to meeting new people. I always colour in the lines. And yes I know it all boils down to the fact that I don't like being out of control. Still, I don't want to grab life by the scruff of the neck and make it my b****. I don't want to live loudly. Life needn't be my bitch. I don't know which way to YOLO*. And til now I've done nicely at achieving what I'd like at a steady, achievable pace. I've had a good dose of luck based on a great deal of preparation.

But I am stuck right now. And my attitude is a big problem.

My resistance to motivation is getting worse as I get older. I'm becoming a crone. And it is because I am scared. Unlike some of our neighbours, I am not scared of immigrants, or automation taking over my job. Who hasn't worked with a few robots in their time already (boom, tish). I can't go online without seeing towering achievement after towering achievement. People are fucking miraculous and motivated and continually asking things of themselves that push boundaries and surprise and elevate those around them. Fuck you, Facebook friends, for elevating the rest of us by association. Social media proves itself time and time again to be quagmire of shitness: its existence as a distraction, its fuelling of my clothes addiction and severe reckoning with my previously decent body image are just a few of these shit things. However, rising up from this fetid pit of consumerist, self hate motivating propaganda is a glorious local news bulletin of achievement. It is magnificent.

Things I love about the internet/social media No longer are parents reduced to a birth notice as the basis for congratulations on a new born. We now get fully detailed origin stories. It is always a genuinely great read and the photos are beautiful and the outpouring of love is real and life affirming.

People can post a clip of themselves singing and it gets watched and shared and praised. And probably bitched about a little, but that's not what I'm focusing on here.

New jobs, new homes, new hair. I love that every blow wave gets its bit of airtime, that birthdays get acknowledged and that every end of year we state our resolutions like we mean it and rescind them as soon as we capitulate during FebFast.


You can write a dumb blog about being an unmotivated crone and at least your sister will read it and share it (not hinting, Stef, you're just very supportive and I appreciate that). If you just wrote shit down in your diary 15 years ago, no one was going to see it and printing it out and handing it out to friends at Christmas would be a little on the nose. Although, I have a mortgage now and maybe self publishing my essays on existing could save me a little Christmas cashola. Bookmark this thought, Amy.

Anyway, the social media can be a good realm for outlets and boosts. It can also be a cesspool of muck: destructive, hurtful and a vortex into which productivity goes to die. I have written another post all about this that I probably wont post cause it's not going to help any of us, because do I really need to add fuel to that bin fire?**

The point is, my point here is.. Despite getting some things done in my time, I now have down time and instead of feeling liberated and flexible I feel scared again. And feeling scared is different to doing things that scare you. It's pathetic and passive and makes me feel small and inferior. I've lost some groove. And getting a little older makes achieving anything BIG and life changing seem exponentially more difficult. The decreasing elasticity in my face seems to relate directly to my inability to bounce back from rejection. Vulnerability has never been my strong suit, particularly in public, and instead of liberating me it's causing heartache and volatility.

Quite basically, I am human and I don't know what to do about it. I'm a high achiever that doesn't know what's worth achieving. Sure, I got some skills but they may need retooling. And amidst all this happening from within my own ticking brain, on the outside I'm fighting with my boyfriend, my dad doesn't believe in climate change, and I'm only just climbing out of the dumb shock of being advised by a doctor to quit performing altogether so I could make a life more suited to being a mother, which I should aim to be within the next year. Or else.

It's a bizarre and unbalanced life, this one, and it's gotten the better of me more days than it hasn't so far this year. (It's ok, I know that doctor is a crock. I only wish I had a good response on the day. I just cried a lot.)

So tonight I write. I write in thanks for the reminders that there is much super human happening around me. I write in fear for the world, because there's a lot happening around us that's scary and sad. I write to hold a giant mirror to myself, trying desperately not to criticise what I see. And I write to be productive. It's exercise, catharsis and yes, it is a way of forcibly scaring my scared self. I have emoted, I am now vulnerable. This is very uncomfortable for me.

Signing off, defeated by the positive messaging of Lululemon and mental health professionals but admittedly relieved that I have poured out some of the mess in my brain and done something. In protest, I'm going to attempt to live well within my comfort zone tomorrow. COME AT ME, COMFORT ZONE.

*YOLO is a really problematic concept for me. Do I to eat all the donuts and drink the wine because YOLO, or do I avoid refined sugars and alcohol because YOLO and your health is important in that one life of yours. I think I'm more in the latter team for YOLO (which just feels like the wrong team. It is the wrong team, isn't it?)

** I really just wanted an understanding place to detail my kaleidoscope of feelings after seeing an instagram video ad that showed a woman getting filler in her cheekbones. It was obscene in the extreme. But... is it actually the future that we will all be Maleficent and maybe I should jump on board and be a taste maker in the area, despite being fairly terrified of needles and also of Maleficent??

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