Saturday, March 7, 2009

Pull on Your Big Girl Panties

Last night I was celebrating a friend's birthday with a few of my girls. Can I tell you, instead of cocktails it should have been a whine and cheese party. Boy did our conversation cover the gamut. Between strawberry/watermelon martinis, we discussed the bad economy and its impact on everything from our livelihoods, our kid's educations, our relationships and most importantly our attitudes about the future.

You know, alcohol really can be a depressant and sometimes the whole misery loves company thing is way more destructive than productive. For more than an hour our celebration became a pity party and frankly it wasn't fun. The suggestion that we stopped talking about all the negativity and adopt a more positive attitude was shot own by someone who said she could no longer pretend to act positive when everything seemed to be going to hell in a hand basket and she felt anything but. Her argument was that feigning positivity and ignoring reality was just as destructive, if not more, as wallowing in self-pity.

She's right. There is a balance to be struck in order to find a middle ground that is realistically optimistic. And part of striking that balance is the realization that this is one of those times when we need to pull on our big girl panties and realistically deal with the hand we've been dealt while at the same time recognizing that this too shall pass and we will recover.

There is a Japanese proverb that says: Find opportunity in crisis. Maybe the key here is not to feign positivity but instead to find the real thing by embracing the idea that there are times in our lives when we have no other choice but to step back and reevaluate our situations and how we are living our lives. Yes, it's different and adjustment is necessary but there are positives coming out of the new reality. Most of us can no longer afford to buy our way into satisfaction and pleasure. Instead we are eating more dinners at home than out at fancy restaurants. Taking more staycations than vacations. Spending more nights on the couch than on the town. We are being forced to 'find joy where we stand' and more times than not we are standing at home with friends and family. Yes, our lives may indeed be changing but a new norm is presenting itself and it's not all bad. In fact, in many ways it's looking pretty damn good.

So ladies, this is one of those times when being a grown up sucks, but you'll get through this (and by the way, embracing your sensuality is one joyful way to do so...more on this later), and after some reconfiguring and rebuilding, you'll be back stronger and more fabulous than ever.

What do you think?

PS. Of course, even in these trying times your big girl panties should match your bra!

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Life can always be worse...Yes, I don't eat out as much, but what's the big deal? At least I am able to buy groceries & cook my own food. Staying home isn't bad...I have an apartment & a large screen TV with cable & a DVD, I would love to have a large house, but instead I make my quarters beautiful. I buy fresh flowers & attempt to keep my small living space beautiful...and I still have a job, my health...I don't even have a man, but it's all good, he's coming...My point is--that it could always be worse...and people have to learn how to deal. I work in an office with a woman who has cerebral palsy, and no family to look out for her...I would rather have the problem of paying bills, eating at home instead of going out (is that really a problem?). So what if you can't vacation this year, there is always next year or the year after...As the old saying goes: This Too Shall Pass...