For quite a while now, I have wanted to start blogging. I’d have all these ideas in my head of things to blog about and I’d tell myself I was just going to start doing it. And I’d say “Ok, I’ll write one after I finish doing this. Or, I’ll do it Monday morning when I am fresh. Then Monday would come and I’d look at my to do list and say, “well, let me cross off these other things first.”
Finally, I decided I put it off too long and I’m just going to do it. So, I got online and started researching the best platforms and that’s when I realized I don’t even know what I’m doing. And I told myself, “you can’t do this, you’re clueless, you’re a horrible writer, remember, you hate writing, English was your worst subject in college. Besides, who really cares what you have to say anyway, nobody wants to hear your stories. Just post pretty pictures on Facebook and worry about figuring out your next mini session day.” And I’d quit. I’d put it in the back of my mind and focus on my photography.
But it was always there. And after a while I’d start thinking about it again. And then I’d take it a step further, and actually write out all my ideas. I’d even start writing one, on paper first of course, and I’d write a paragraph or two and I’d go back to reread it and I’d start scratching half of it out. I’d write another paragraph and scratch the whole page and start writing something entirely different. I’d be halfway done, go back to reread and shut my notebook because it was stupid. I’m just not a good writer. It’s been too long since I’ve been in school and I don’t even remember if I’m putting the commas in the right places, and I absolutely cannot write a blog that looks like a 2nd grader wrote it. So I’d quit.
You see, that’s what I do. I’m a quitter, that’s who I am. I’ve pretty much quit everything I’ve ever done. As a child, I was always involved in some kind of extra curricular. I took dance lessons, piano lessons, modeling, I was a majorette, did gymnastics, drama club, girl scouts, kick boxing, all kinds of activities. And for some reason or another, I quit all of them. Then came college. My first semester I went to Seton Hill University for accounting, but I quit after only 1 semester. That actually wasn’t entirely my fault, it was a money issue. So I took a semester off and decided to go back to community college in the fall, for nursing this time. But, after 1 semester, you guessed it, I quit. I moved to the city, took a year off and ended up back in school, this time with no major. During that semester I took a job with a portrait studio and decided at the end of the semester, maybe school just wasn’t for me. Plus, I was promoted to studio manager after only a few short months, so I didn’t really have time for school anyway.
The thing is, it wasn’t that school was too hard for me. I was really good at school, I had straight As almost every semester ( just like high school). I’d study my butt off, take really good notes and pour myself into my school work. So much so that my school work would consume my life and when the semester was over, I was exhausted and needed a break.
I found that I did the same with my work. I was a studio manager for 7 years. I loved my job and was really good at it. I built my 1st studio up from a low volume F to a D volume in just one year. I was invited to the company’s winter meeting in Costa Rica and was invited to a summer meeting every year I was there. I was a conversion trainer and traveled to a few studios across the country to convert them from film to digital. I took over the 1st 2 camera room studio in the district and ended up taking 3rd place in the whole company for Studio Manager of the Year. In my final year with the company I was a 50/50 district trainer. I spent half my week managing my studio and the other half traveling to other studios and working on photography development with other studio managers.
I loved my job. I poured myself into it all day, everyday. I worked 7 days a week, because even on my “days off” I’d have managers calling me with questions or even just to “talk shop.” And I’d pop in on my staff to see how the day was going. Or I’d sit down at play place and work on the schedule for the next week while my daughter played. I worked A LOT! And then one day, I decided I couldn’t do it anymore. I couldn’t eat, sleep and breath my job anymore because I was missing out on watching my daughter grow. So I quit.
I knew I had to quit for my daughter’s sake and honestly, it was the best thing I’ve ever done. I worked part time for a bit and focused on being a mom. I had almost a year with my daughter before she started kindergarten and I sucked up all the time with her I could get. It was wonderful. But deep down, I knew what I was. I was a quitter. I was ashamed of myself. Nobody likes a quitter. I will never forget my bosses’ faces when I told them I wanted to step down. “We are just so disappointed in you Stacey.” I was disappointed in myself. For years I held on to that. I thought maybe if I went back to school, I wouldn’t feel so disappointed in myself. I signed myself up for another semester at the community college. All online classes, I went full force. I was studying and reading every minute of everyday. And again, straight As. In fact, my lowest A was a 97% But it was hard. I was 29 years old, I had a husband and a 1st grader and a house to take care of and I still worked part time. I didn’t sign up for another semester. I’m a quitter, remember.
Why do I quit everything? Especially when I’m really good at something. I’ll tell you why… Because I am also a perfectionist! If I do something, I do it ALL THE WAY. I like to be the best. I like to make the Dean’s list and I like to win awards. I even like to win at games, and I usually do. Anybody want to play me in a game of Scrabble? You better study, because in all the times I’ve played, I’ve only lost a handful of times. I love to win. I love to be good at something, and the way I get good at something… I eat sleep and breathe it until I’m the best. Then, once I’ve won the award, got the promotion, got the straight As, once I have physically, mentally and emotionally exhausted myself, I quit. I’m an all or nothing kind of person. If I can’t give my all and be the best, I don’t want any parts of it. I am a perfectionist and I am a quitter.
That is why I haven’t wrote a blog post before this. If its not perfect, I quit before it could ever get finished.
Today I decided I’m done with these labels I’ve put on myself. Perfectionism is just procrastination in fancy clothes. I don’t want to be a perfectionist. I don’t have to be what I say I am. That voice in my head that’s saying “this whole thing sounds stupid, no one is going to read it, you should just quit,” well, she is a bully and I’m done listening to her. I’m not quitting this time. and if it’s not perfect, then oh well! Because I am done subscribing to thought that I am a perfectionist. I have a new motto. “Done is better than perfect!” So, I apologize for any and all grammatical errors you’ve found while reading my 1st blog post. It’s not perfect, but it’s done and I didn’t quit!