Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Get Over It

‘What a wonderful day it’s going to be,’

I had just breezed in with my trusty duster and cleaning cloths. He greeted me with these words from his spot at the computer in the reception area.

‘Oh?’ I said. ‘So you’ve got something special happening today?’

But he shook his head.

‘No, not really,’ he told me, and then went on to explain. ‘It’s just that I’m fairly new here and everything is still fresh and exciting. So every day is going to be wonderful.’

Do you know, the very first thought that popped into my mind was to say something along the lines of

‘Well make the most of it because it won’t last!’

But, thankfully, I managed to quash that thought before it found utterance.

See I remembered people saying things like that to me when I was all excited and filled with enthusiasm about something new in my life.
Like when, after years of being a stay-at-home Mum, I was able to get myself a job. I was over the moon, but the moment I expressed my feelings on the subject, everyone told me

‘Oh you’ll get over that, believe me’

I guess I’ve heard those words a number of times during my life. Whenever I’ve been brimming with excitement about anything – including my first adolescent crush – someone has always seen fit to tell me,

‘You’ll get over it,’

Now of course they were right. My enthusiasm did wane with time, sometimes much more quickly than others. What started out as so fresh and exciting soon turned into the mundane. Well except in the case of the first crush – that turned into reams of dark poetry filled with heartache and thoughts of ending it all. But I did get over it.

And I totally understand that we could never maintain that level of excitement for long periods of time without causing ourselves physical and emotional harm – all that adrenaline pumping, heart racing, jumping-out-of-your-skin reaction to life is really only ever meant to be a short term thing.

But I wonder how much of our ‘Ho-Hum’ attitude is actually due to an inevitable decline in enthusiasm and how much of it is actually programmed into us? 

Someone comes into work so obviously full of the joie de vivre and your first response is to ask them
‘So what are you on?’ (Or to make assumptions about their nocturnal activities of the previous night.)

The shop assistant is bubbly and wants to chat and we think,

‘She’s a bit over the top,’

Could it be a case of sour grapes? Do we react to happy, enthusiastic people in this way because they make us feel lacking? Because we wish we knew how to be more like that instead of being bogged down in our own particular patch of mire?

At the moment the (very young) guy at the reception desk is bursting with positivity because everything is new and life is full of opportunity. I have no idea if his youthful exuberance will stand the test of time or not, but I sincerely hope so.

 I didn’t want to tell him 

‘You’ll get over it’,

 because I really hope he doesn’t. 

©Lyn Murphy 2012

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