Wednesday, January 31, 2007

File under "Me"

{disclaimer} When I started this blog, I struggled with the question of just how personal I wanted to get. Without knowing how it would evolve, it was difficult to come up with a definite answer. I knew it would be viewed by my family and friends and maybe even some colleagues but how comfortable would I be sharing my thoughts with the rest of the world? Although still a little reluctant, I have come to a conclusion: If you are willing to spend a part of your day in my little corner of the web, it is only fair that I am open and honest about myself. Now don't get worried, this isn't going to turn into my public diary and I promise never to write poems about my ex-girlfriend. I just wanted to preface this post by sharing with you my thought process. Here I am for all to see; go ahead and judge. Phew! That was liberating. {/disclaimer}

If you know me, it's no secret that 2006 was a difficult year in my life. If there was a bad decision to be made, I made it. Everything that could go wrong, pretty much did. I won't bore you with details but let's just say that rock bottom is closer than you think and it doesn't take long to get there. I am exaggerating slightly for dramatic effect but I did manage to screw up just about every aspect of my life in less than a year.

As I began to explore the reasons for my reckless and irrational behaviour, I discovered something that was comforting as much as it was alarming: I was not alone. It seemed that everyone I talked to was just as lost, confused, and unhappy as I was on some level. In fact, a surprising number of people I know are taking anti depressives or have been on them at one time in their life. Of course, there is the argument of over prescription and misdiagnosis but there is no question that something unsettling has surfaced here. Why am I and everyone I know so damn miserable?

Let's put this into context - I have good friends, a family that loves me, a rewarding career, a comfortable home, a fridge full of vegetables, a closet full of sweaters in a multitude of colours, straight teeth and a health plan. It would seem that I have everything going for me and no reason to complain and if you performed the same checklist on most of my friends, you would find the same thing. So why can't we get no satisfaction? It's a question I find more perplexing the further I explore it.

To continue with the Rolling Stones references, you can't always get what you want; this I realize, but I'm also sure we are more than just a bunch of spoiled brats with a false sense of entitlement and a bad attitude. There seems to be a deeply rooted sadness in all of us and I can't understand why (forgive me for sounding too Emo but it's a bi-product of our generation.)

As I continue to update this blog, I will come back to this topic frequently because I think it is the key to understanding myself, our culture, and the way we interact with the world around us.

I'll leave you with a quote from C.P. Snow: "The pursuit of happiness is a most ridiculous phrase if you pursue happiness you'll never find it."