The last few days, this thought has been keeping me busy: does what I want to do, or think I ought to do, make me happy or do me harm, and if not, does it make anyone else happy or do anyone else harm? If it does not do any of these things, then it absolutely makes no difference and it is probably not important if it's done or not. If it makes me or anyone else happy, then it is very important and it gets done, and if it harms anyone, well, that speaks for itself.
I find it a good rule to live by and it takes care of any guilt feelings I may have about what I think I am supposed to do by society's standards. These standards don't even come into play, they being the ones about what the neighbors will say if you exhibit a certain kind of behavior. I don't want to pay any attention to them.
I seem to be going through a massive growing spurt emotionally, and one I thought was not possible at my age. This comes after a period of stagnation when I thought everything was static and there was even some backward motion. Lots of people are turning out to be teachers, whether or not this is their intention. It is because several events are taking place at roughly the same time, which is something that always seems to happen in life.
Luckily, the nice thing about being older, is that I have the knowledge to learn from these experiences and use the lessons I learn to my advantage. I don't ignore anything I hear or see or feel, and try to draw something good out of it that I get wiser from.
That makes me sound awfully assured, but let me tell you that I am not that much in reality. I theory I know a lot and I can reason myself into being brave, but I have lots of periods of insecurity when I am not all that sure of myself. Especially in the morning I do have to gather my courage about me.
I find that I am braver when I am surrounded by other people and less brave when I am confronted with just myself. It's because I see myself reflected off other people and realize that I am not such an odd person, and if I do differ, I see that the difference does not matter so much. This, of course, works better when I know the other person well.
That sense of insecurity, I have had my whole life and I was probably born with it. As a rule, I bullshit my way through life and act like I am a lot tougher. That's why I like to wear my 'tough broad boots.'