Being Human

I admit, sometimes I use writing as an outlet for venting frustration because it’s not a strong suit of mine to openly vent verbally.

As much as I’ve enjoyed many of my occupations & volunteer pursuits over time, I’m finding I’m processing & shedding a lot of baggage I wasn’t even aware I had been carrying around up until very recently.

This whole transplant process I’ve found has awoken some internal anger in me that I had just “sucked up” & buried for years.  Occasionally, I see it surface or bleed out in conversations & thoughts.

I don’t think it’s negative to put it out there or admit to it.

I do tend to put it out there that if someone else down the line feels the same way they can see the rawness of what I write about & maybe feel more comfortable in processing their own experiences. Both the great things & not-so-great things that come with this.

While I need to get better in addressing it immediately as it arises, & discussing such things one-on-one, in real time, sometimes I don’t always see it until I can reflect back on it.

I do joke to many online friends about the “midwestern nice” phenomenon.  It’s a real thing, seriously…

I’m finding it’s still clearly one of my hardest habits to break because it’s been embedded for over 20 years.   The eat what you’re served mantra — even if it’s runny eggs, for example, was a constant in my life a long time.

“Don’t complain, it’s negative.”  “Pick your battles.”  (Ah again, more platitudes coming to roost).

Some of it was a defense mechanism because of not being comfortable with facing direct confrontation because again, it’s not a strong suit of mine. Admittedly, no one likes to “lose” or having the perception of “losing”.

Or fear of reprisal or it affecting other people when I open my mouth even with salient points.   Then again, for most people, discourse isn’t something that always comes easy by nature, either.

I admit that was my biggest culture shock I needed to adjust to after I moved out of the plains states almost 16 years ago. The sheer directness of people. It used to intimidate me until I could feel secure enough to embrace it.

I was so used to the passive-aggressive response. As much as I hated it, it’s a hard thing to break.

There are still days I feel I still haven’t fully acclimated & feel intimated by being direct.  Yet I do see I’ve made progress & I do work on it on a continual basis.

It’s ongoing & not practiced well in a vacuum.  I feel I have made the most progress with it in healthcare conversations.

I think that’s because it’s a clear, relatable, & tangible base to start from. Both professionally & personally for me, it’s my wheelhouse & safe zone.  Yet, I can’t hide behind it or use it as a crutch to stunt growth in more aspects of my life.

Outside of that realm, I’m finding I still have much to learn & many vulnerabilities.

I’m self-aware for sure, much more so than I used to be. But progress often happens in baby steps rather than leaps & bounds.

I don’t think showing vulnerability or admitting personality flaws is a bad thing.  It just makes us human & relatable.  Calling them out sometimes & addressing them can be a good thing.

I don’t think people challenging my thoughts is either.

Sometimes I just like pontificating, pure & simple.

Calling out thoughts & experiences to discuss issues seldom discussed or tossed around because I don’t where to start the conversation.

Writing has always been a convenient springboard for a jumpstart.

I also admit I am often geeking out on things that other people find mundane & boring so then I wonder well “who really gives a shit”?  “Who will really want to talk about this anyway or wants to hear about it”?

So, I tend to have more internal dialogue, but admittedly that can lead to a one-sided perspective.

I’m thankful for the people in my life that call me out on bullshit like this when it happens because then that leads to a more balanced opinion & learning more about issues that matter & life in general.

(My friends are experts at challenging me, luckily they also have the patience of Job with me at my worst).

I agree it should be more inherently natural & they shouldn’t have to take that approach.

But I, like most people, also have insecurities & crutches I like to hide behind occasionally.  That leads to blinders and also inhibits growth.

So while I’m taking this time dealing with transplant to address my health, I’m also using it to address my growth as a person.

The time for being stunted & stuck has long since past.




3 thoughts on “Being Human

  1. Nikki, my assurance that Midwest Nice is real, and that you are a living example why. Thought I’d share the lyrics of a song written by a Michigan friend, Joel Mabus. Its called……..

    Hopelessly Midwestern
    (Joel Mabus)

    If you live life in the middle and not on the edge,
    You’re hopelessly Midwestern.
    If a big weekend means cutting the hedge,
    You’re hopelessly Midwestern.
    If you shop at Sears and drink a lot of iced tea,
    Love to dance the Polka and watch TV.
    Then the verdict is in and the jury agrees.
    You’re hopelessly Midwestern.

    CHO: Hopelessly Midwestern, corn-fed boys and girls.

    Hopelessly Midwestern. square pegs in a big round world.

    Well, you can go from sea to shining sea,

    But right in the middle, that’s the place for me.

    And if you like it like that then you’re a lot like me,

    You’re hopelessly Midwestern.

    If you like all of your roads, narrow and straight,
    You’re hopelessly Midwestern.
    And if you think sushi looks a lot like bait.
    You’re hopelessly Midwestern.
    If you like your potatoes mashed and your chicken fried,
    Your green beans boiled and your apples pied.
    And you ain’t trusted nothin’ since Rock Hudson died.
    You’re hopelessly Midwestern.

    If annual rainfall is a real hot topic,
    You’re hopelessly Midwestern.
    And if the Pocono Mountains sounds kind of exotic,
    You’re hopelessly Midwestern.
    If you like Gerald Ford just as much as Betty,
    And a big old corn field looks mighty pretty.
    And you’d rather go to hell then to New York City.
    You’re hopelessly Midwestern.

    Liked by 1 person

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