Trains of thought

I had a dream

A few nights ago, I dreamed that Jason was having an affair with a bank teller. We were living downtown, I think, because I walked by a bank with a drive through and he was in a convertible in the drive-through lane, leaning over and kissing the teller. It now occurs to me that there was no glass between the lane and the tellers, which would never happen in real life, but dreams don't have to be realistic, I suppose. The only other things I remember about the dream, other than the drive-thru sighting, are that we sat down and talked about how long the affair had been going on ("About two weeks") and whether or not they'd been intimate ("Only three or four times. Or maybe five").

I've had dreams about Jason having an affair before (one time involving a bathtub and a party at Leia's gigantic non-existent townhouse), which doesn't at all seem rational because he's the last person on the planet who would ever cheat. But I've had the dreams all the same, and Jason usually has to wake me up because I'm whimpering in my sleep. The only other times I whimper in my sleep are when I'm dreaming that someone I love has died (and I've dreamed Jason has died almost as often as he's cheated). In college I had a particularly vivid dream that involved my mom dying and when I woke up I was so shaken that I started crying and called her to make sure she was still alive.

The dreams make some sense, though - my two biggest fears are abandonment and death. Not my own death, but the death of people I love and depend on, without whom I can't imagine functioning.

But coming in a close third is my fear of mediocrity. More than being a failure, I fear being hopelessly average. I'm sure a big part of it is ego (or is it?), but I want to be successful and be good at what I do and recognized for it. This mostly manifests itself as extreme perfectionism, to the point of lethargy. Lethargy and perfectionism don't exactly sound like they'd go hand in hand, but for me they do - I feel so overwhelmed by what I need to do and the time it would take to reach that sublime level of perfection that I mentally shut down and I can't do anything. My professors in college knew all about it - some even suffered the same affliction - and we worked hard to get me to accept a level of "good enough" when I needed to. But somehow between then and now, I've reverted back into my old ways. It frustrates me because I see people being successful while producing work that I would frown upon - but they're successful. And I wonder how I can get a piece of that success; it seems like it should be easier for me, since I know there are things that I'm good at. I just need to bridge the divide between my desire for success and the stumbling blocks that keep me from trying.

I don't know where that train of thought is going. I'm happy to lay on the couch, if anyone wants to take a stab at it.

Anyway, I finally ponied up joined AIGA this week. It's a shiny, pretty penny, but it should pay off in the long run in terms of networking opportunities, name recognition and professional development (you know, for that "success" stuff I was talking about). And the design conference is in Denver next October! I've got my first event next week - I'm going to hear William Espey of Chipotle speak about all thing branding. Chipotle is one of the best out there when it comes to branding, so I'm hoping his talk will be relevant to not only my current job but to my business endeavors. And I'll get to hang out in Denver some more, which is never a bad thing.

BOOBIE UPDATE: They're healing fabulously, thank you. I had an open spot on each side that I went to see Dr. Tuchler about, just in case, but they're doing just fine - no infections, almost completely healed. I even ditched my bandages today since I haven't seen any leakage in a couple days. Next week I have my six-week appointment (even though today is technically six weeks) and with any luck he'll clear me to get back to exercise. Veronica is chomping at the bit to whip my tush back into fighting form.