So much to read into here:
What a difference pink tutus make…
Julia stayed well after our meeting ended today and we just talked. We talked like old friends who hadn’t seen each other in years. For some reason tonight, all the stress, anticipation, pressure, and guilt I’ve felt this year on a constant basis subsided. I could feel that both Julia and I had stopped beating ourselves up for not achieving the lofty (perfectionist) goals we had originally set out to do with NonSociety.
Long ago my vision somehow got clouded and I lost sight of what actually matters. Besides the thrill of building and exploring, I lost sight of the people in front of me full of genuine love and friendship. The people close to me that can see things I sometimes can’t see myself.
With that, tonight I saw Julia. I finally saw my old friend again. My Julia. Stripped of all the stress we once felt, all the bossiness that means well, but often comes across overbearing. She stood in my kitchen with dyed crimson hair, no makeup, she was real….she was beautiful. All the name-dropping we once reveled in, gone. All the pressure we once felt- Gone. All the fear- Gone. Yes, we felt free enough to have a reflective conversation about how much had changed over the last year.
With the perspective of age and a year that feels as fast as it feels long, I could tell that tonight we had arrived at peace. I knew in my heart that we would not only survive the hiccups, the bad decisions, and self-doubts of our initial venture. We’d more than just make it through another year; we’d thrive and find a happiness that can only be achieved with vision and hard work.
Yes, we spent a better part of this year doing zany stunts (often very out of character for me). Can you imagine being a grown woman fresh out of working with the staunch suits in finance, suddenly wearing neon spandex in Times Square lip dubbing to ‘Dancing in the Streets’?
We fought like sisters, three different perspectives. I, most of the time didn’t even bother to voice my opinion. It was too much effort to exert, while trying to navigate a site in the dark. The hairy times were familial.
Dysfunctional, but familial.
Yes, I admit I was a bad blogger. I put 10% of my effort into writing and the other 90% stressing out about what my readers would think of me. ‘Would they think my opinions are stupid? Would they call me a luddite?’ Sometimes all of my fears would be validated by reading a deprecating comment or a nasty email. Like a friend, I was fearful if my audience REALLY got to know me they wouldn’t like me.
I felt exposed in this new very public digital sphere. Where were the rules? I wanted to be everyone’s friend, but in the end, my content just became a snooze-fest. I became a self-proclaimed ‘Geekette’, but seriously, what the hell does that even mean anyways? I’m a fan of technology? Who really cares? These days, who isn’t in L-O-V-E with their iPhone?
Yes, our little online experiment was a bit of a struggle for me personally. Partially because I’m a very private person, I’m used to keeping a good game face on, no matter what I feel inside.
With that I was forced to either ignore, or try to figure out who was the real ‘Meghan Asha’. I choose the latter, all while feeling exposed in a public forum. Putting things out online felt like being examined under a microscope. Talk about seeing your imperfections, they were all over this digital space, not to mention viewed by others in real time.
Coming from corporate I had so many judgments on what I was doing.
Did I look like an idiot? Sometimes.
Was my writing shallow? Often.
And videos? Don’t even get me started on my amateur editing.
When I quit my job a year and a half ago I thought I had it all figured out. Just because I decided to follow my passion and ‘live differently’ didn’t mean I entirely knew who I was. So often, I took the easy way out this year, letting the business run me, rather than me run the business. I got scared, I tuned out, at points I even lost my passion, wondering how the heck I got myself involved in such an avant garde digital venture. My default is to follow rules, not take chances, and adhere to a plan. For anyone wanting to be an entrepreneur this is an awful way to be.
Throughout the year, I often wondered how the heck I signed up for this circus. We used ourselves as online guinea pigs in a pseudo version that sometimes felt like a bad version of the Truman Show, what could possibly come from this?
Actually a lot.
With all the craziness, all the financial pressure, the emotional questions that made me want to disassociate. Even with the judgmental emails from readers, friends, and family members. I still wouldn’t change a thing. I wouldn’t change the time in our business where we became in love with our own reflections and neglected to see the bigger picture. I wouldn’t change the dramatic dashes to the airport where we almost made our cabbie crash because of our own time constraints. I wouldn’t change dressing up in Three Musketeers costumes that took more than a thousand candy bars to make. I wouldn’t change blogging my life in sometimes the most superficial way possible, looking like a party girl at times, with not a deep bone in my body.
It all was worth it. It was a wild ride.
I lived imperfectly perfect this year. I lived in vibrant colors surrounded by pink tutus, a statuesque blonde, way too many little barking dogs that I’ve since grown to love. Gone was exactly what I wanted to be rid of, the grayness of my cubical, the mundane. Yes, at times I longed for a schedule, for the haven of a 9 to 5. Even for (surprise, surprise) anonymity away from the critical eye of the Internet.
But isn’t it always the case? You never really get perspective until after the fact.
Things are hectic still, but I have also calmed down. I have a clearer more confident sense of where we’re going. Where I’d like to take the site, what I want my role to be, and my comfort level being online. I don’t know what happened, maybe I just got past that ever so prevalent ‘quarter life crisis’, whatever it is, it feels good. I’m more than ready for the next chapter; I know it’s going to be a goody.
Thank you for reading and thank you for coming along for the ride…