Skip to content

Day 04: Figuring My Life Out

I had an existential crisis before I got out of bed this morning.

This isn’t particularly unusual, although the source was slightly unexpected: Mindy Kaling.

I was reading Is Everybody Hanging Out Without Me? (as you do on Sunday mornings) and I came to this essay about men and boys:

Until I was 30, I dated only boys. I’ll tell you why: Men scared the shit out of me. Men know what they want. Men own alarm clocks. Men sleep on a mattress that isn’t on the floor.

Boys are adorable. Boys trail off their sentences in an appealing way. Boys get haircuts from their roommate, who “totally knows how to cut hair.” Boys can pack up their whole life and move to Brooklyn for a gig if they need to. Boys have “gigs.” Boys are broke. And when they do have money, they spend it on a trip to Colorado to see a music festival.

I put the book down and from my mattress-on-the-floor vantage point I stared at the walls in my room, empty except for a movie poster I bummed off a theater manager last month.

What if my intentionally minimalist aesthetic is just a ruse to cover the fact that I’m too lazy to buy a bed frame? 

What if my carefully curated anti-consumerist lifestyle is just an excuse to be a boy instead of a man?

What if my mis-matched thrift store wine glasses are just cheap, and not actually a post-materialist statement?

Should I stop cutting my own hair and spending all my money on “experiences”? 

Should I go to IKEA and buy real furniture and matching glassware?

Should I get an iPhone and a real job?

Am I actually fourteen years old?

I guess what I’m trying to say is, don’t read essays by TV comedians when you first wake up or you might wind up rethinking your entire life before you’ve had a chance to make coffee.


So here it is, Sunday morning, and I’m trying to figure out what I’m doing with my life.

I’ve told you before that I don’t have my shit together, and this is very true. But what I tell myself is that I need to hurry up and get my shit together, preferably before lunch time.

There’s always a picture of what that looks like in my mind: Reading books and taking dance lessons and stocking my fridge with green leafy things. Getting on a budget and buying a calendar and mowing my lawn. Finding new podcasts and joining a twenty-somethings’ group and maybe volunteering at my kids’ school. Buying an organizational thingy from IKEA, taking up yoga, and making some meaningful art to hang on my walls.

Getting your shit together is overwhelming and exhausting.


When I think about becoming human, I tend to paint a picture of this cultured, organized, well-rested, healthy, socially-connected version of myself that I am trying to become. Then I wake up every day and freak out that I am not “there” yet.

When I’m feeling particularly wise and insightful, I remind myself that there is no “there”.

There is no destination. There is only the journey.

Ah, yes. It’s so wise and profound. I’ll wait here while you go tweet that.

But it’s easier to tweet than to believe.


Today I know what I’m doing with my life.

I’m getting out of bed and taking a shower. Then I’m cleaning my kitchen and making myself one of those ridiculous omelettes stuffed with sausage and spinach and melty cheese.

After that I’ll brew a cup of coffee and step outside to drink it in the sunshine.

And I will try to let myself off the hook for not being the perfect version of me that doesn’t yet exist and never actually will.

(song contains some swears)

published October 4, 2015

subscribe to updates:

(it's pretty much the only way to stay in touch with me these days)