"I yam what I yam." Who said it?
Popeye, that's right. That one eyed, ridiculously muscled, pipe smoking, Olive Oyl devotee. Of course he was a cartoon, but maybe just the fact that Popeye said this line quite often might point to Reoccurring Identity Frustration. And seriously, who hasn't felt that?
Who am I supposed to be? What am I supposed to do? What are my gifts? My talents?
What do I want to be when I grow up?
Mama tells me of my despair in high school when I came home reporting that one of my friends knew exactly what she was going to do with her life. She was going to be a doctor and I didn't have the first clue. Mama reminding me of that, and how things worked in both my life and my friend's, helped me with my kids conundrums of choosing a major in college. and then another one. and then another one. and then--well, you get the picture.
Being away from home these past couple weeks while my dad had brain surgery has been tiring, scary, lonely, and just plain old strange. And with defenses down doubt comes creeping around. What an amazing blessing to be able to drop everything and come stay here. But it's also disconcerting to be able to do that and realize not one thing suffered. Seriously - if I am (as I've come to believe) the center of the universe - shouldn't my absence be noted?
Whose idea was it to be a writer? Being unpublished means I have nothing to show for what I do. Nothing to miss, no deadlines to push back, nobody waiting on the next book. Write or Don't write - nobody knows. But Popeye, and God, reminded me this morning. I yam what I yam. Loving words and wanting to write wasn't my idea. I can lament the shortcomings or I can embrace the privileges.
This morning I'm choosing embracing. How are you at embracing what you are?
And heres Popeye's song - And I yam what I yam and I yam what I yam that I yam / And I gotta lotta muscle and I only gots one eye / And I never hurts nobody and I'll never tell a lie / Top to me bottom and bottom to me top / That's the way it is 'til the day that I drop, what am I / I yam what I yam