ASH AMBIRGE

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For My People-Pleasing Babes Running Themselves Ragged (In Which The Phrase “Suck an Eggplant” Totally Makes an Appearance)

In: Feeling Disillusioned With Life

There’s a dirty little question I’ve been asking myself a lot, lately—and some might condemn me for it. In fact, this question is so controversial, I suspect 50% of the population may show up at the door with axes and sledgehammers, knives and crowbars.

It is not a very Christian thing to think—then again, I’ve never been much of a Christian. (Just ask the girls who cornered me in grad school once and told me, with sweat upon their brow, that they thought the devil was in me—that cheeky bastard.)

It is also not a popular thought, judging by the societal emphasis on charity and goodwill and unselfishness and giving, giving, giving. (Like, sorry dude, I am not giving you my hamburger.)

However, it is a thought that has helped me a great deal, over the years—especially when I am anxious and angsty and constantly preoccupied with doing “the right thing.” THAT phrase. The right thing! Aren’t we quite the noble bunch. I have found myself trying to do “the right thing” far more than I’d like to admit.

I think that whole notion is one big, giant mindfuck. The right thing for whom? Who is to say what is right? Is there some universal true & just meter that I should know about? I don’t think one size fits all, and it is a fool’s errand, trying to do right by everybody. There will always be someone who will tell you that you are wrong, even when you are doing what you think is right.

I prefer to ask myself another question. Not what is right, but—are you ready for this radical shit?—but what is right for me. Oh, GOD, there it is, I did it! I uttered the word you get crucified for daring to utter aloud: me! What is right for me? ME, ME, ME, ME, ME, ME, MEEEEEE. What a selfish psychopath I am, daring to put my own needs first. Alas, there is a reason why I am not strung up in a cubicle, quietly rotting to death.

What is right for me?
What do I need, right now?
And is that different?

It’s too easy to get swept away by the drama of everyone else’s needs and wishes and wants and demands. We think, with a head full of anxiety, about how to please Susie and also Barb and then there’s Lacey, and her stupid chihuahua, too, and oh my god, how am I going to do it all? How can I be in all of these places at once? How can I make sure everybody goes home happy?

The first person who needs to go home happy is you.

(Everybody else can suck an eggplant.)

OH MY GOD, I’M JUST KIDDING, WHO WRITES THAT? We’re not complete barbarians, around here. Jesus, what do you think I am? Trailer trash? What I meant to say is that everybody else can suck a dick.

Ahem.

It’s not that no one else matters. Of course, lots of people matter, and you are doing your best to be a great human being to all. But there is one person who you’ve been leaving behind, over and over and over again, who doesn’t deserve it one bit. In fact, you should shower her with cookies and champagne and lavish trips to the Bahamas this year (even if it’s only on Netflix). There is one person who deserves your absolute best, every single day, and who you really do need to do right by.

YOU.

You, you, you, you, you, you, YOUUUUUUU.

Goddammit, did you hear me? YOU. What do you need to do today for you? What do you need right now? What do you need this week? What would make you happy? This is a different question than asking what you need to do in order to (a) Get it all done; (b) Make it all work; (c) Not disappoint anybody; (d) Not drop any balls.

And guess what? If the question is different, the answer is likely to be, too.

You are not a call girl for the world’s expectations.

Your primary duty is to yourself, to create and enjoy a life that you are overjoyed to be living, to nurture your headspace and your environment and be at peace with your own efforts.

But you can’t do that if your efforts are constantly being hijacked by others.

May 18

2017

When You Feel Like a Hot Mess Full of Walking Contradictions and WHO ARE YOU AND WHAT IS YOUR LIFE?

You don’t have to choose, you know. You can be intelligent…and sensual. Extroverted…and introverted. Complex…and simple. You…and someone who’s evolving into someone else. Sometimes, in an effort to finally define who the fuck we are, we start putting ourselves into the little boxes voluntarily—the same ones that we spent our earlier years trying to escape. […]

In: Feeling Dead and Uninspired, Feeling Disillusioned With Life

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Nov 27

2017

Self-Care Isn’t Always Glamorous.

Sooooo, it’s the holidays, and you know what that means? We all need to figure out how the hell we’re going to take care of our drooling, forgetful, overwhelmed selves, come the new year. (Oh, you’re not drooling and forgetful? GET OFF MY YARD.) Which brings up the topic of self-care. Jesus christ we’re bad at […]

In: Feeling Disillusioned With Life

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May 31

2018

If Somebody Told Me to Pick a Husband at Age Twenty-Three, I’d Likely Be Waking Up Next to Some Guy Who Can’t Spell “Lemon.”

You know why we’re all unhappy and restless and jaded and depressed? LIFE IS BORING US TO TEARS. Boredom is the devil, but most people don’t realize they’re bored. They’re busy working. They’re busy running. They’re busy doing ALL THE ERRANDS and keeping up with those fucksticks, The Jones’. It doesn’t feel like they’re bored, […]

In: Feeling Dead and Uninspired, Feeling Disillusioned With Life

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Jan 23

2019

OH, NO, SORRY TO DISAPPOINT. All Fucks Are Currently on Backorder. We’ll Alert You When This Item Is Back in Stock.

So there’s this tall, spiky, sassy-ass house plant on my balcony—the thing looks like a punk rocker troll, or maybe a pile of swords, planted upright. (Scratch that, it’s definitely a pile of middle fingers. Oh, how apropos! THIS CHANGES EVERYTHING.) Anywauurrrrryyyyy, if I don’t water this motherfucker for just one day. Just ONE day. All […]

In: Feeling Disillusioned With Life

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Apr 30

2018

If You Feel Like a Big, Fat Imposter Who Doesn’t Deserve Anything and Worries About EVERYTHING, Read This. It’s a GOOD Thing.

I’m writing this from a place that could almost be mistaken for the Italian countryside, were I not surrounded by lizards and toucans and bullfrogs the size of a fucking dinosaur. Rather, I am high up in the hills of Central America overlooking the Costa Rican valley from my squishy, pancake lounger—it sort of reminds me of […]

In: Feeling Dead and Uninspired, Feeling Disillusioned With Life

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