whim: an odd or capricious notion or desire; a sudden or freakish fancy

Sunday, October 14, 2012

goals and failures and choosing a favorite color

well, i hate to start out by saying that i've mostly failed in my goals the last couple of weeks, but alas, it is true. i guess it depends on your definition of failure, though––after all, i am blogging, and i have written a few things (not every day, unfortunately), but i've just not been as consistent as i want to be. and i continue to waver in the attention i pay to spirituality. but, i realize that failure is sometimes the first step in success, as they say, so i'm hoping that this coming week will be better in a few different ways.

the past couple of weeks have been heinous. i've had some sort of cloud hanging over my head, and in spite of the fact that i'm working hard i feel like i'm getting nothing done. i was rejected for an internship i was hoping to get, spent an entire saturday up to my neck in literary theory, and overall i feel like i'm barely treading water. i've been informed that the first semester of the second year of grad school is particularly stressful, so i'm hoping and praying that i'll live through the semester, with some energy to reach my goals.

there is one thing i am grateful for, however: good people. i am blessed with a circle of good people around me––good friends––who continue to be supportive and encouraging. friends and family have been the one to keep be on board these last couple of weeks. i send my love to them!

there is one other thing that i'm grateful for: today. i've always been selfish with my sundays, mostly refusing to do schoolwork or anything unpleasant because i need at least one day to be free of what i deal with the other six days. (this makes it sound like i dread the things i do during the week, which isn't true. i do let the stress get to me, though, and it becomes harder to be motivated about what i do. i guess that's why i need sundays: to keep me going throughout the rest of the week.) after church today, my friend paige and i went to utah lake to sit in the warm weather (unusually warm for mid-october, which is also a blessing), and it was so relaxing that i felt at least partially renewed. the sun was bright, and the sunshine made the ducks' feathers glow unpredictably bright, and the mountains were so colorful from the fall colors. it was delightful. i love the colors of fall. even though fall signals the impending cold, i still love it because everything is so bright before getting bleak during the winter. i have some lovely pictures, and i'll post them next time.

thinking of color made me think of a small dilemma i've been having the last several years. it's nothing too traumatic, but it still makes me feel a little uneasy. the dilemma is this: i don't know what my favorite color is. i have pet colors, and i love colors in general, but it seems like the answer to the question what is your favorite color? is part of a person's identity, and not knowing what color is my favorite is like missing a piece of myself. a little overdramatic? maybe. probably. but i'm still thinking about it.

for a long time, red was my favorite color. i don't know why, but red was it. did it have something to do with ruby red slippers? maybe. did it have something to do with strawberries and raspberries, which are two of my favorite fruits? maybe. i really don't know, and i have to wonder if red was just the first color that popped into my mind when someone asked me what my favorite color was. does that mean it was really my favorite color? not necessarily. it probably just meant that i had seen a red car that i really liked earlier that day, or that or that i saw a picture of a celebrity with bright red lipstick i admired, or something like that. whatever the reason, it stuck for a while. i owned a red laptop until it bit the dust; i painted a red accent wall in my room; i gravitated towards red clothing; i loved red flowers. eventually, though, i grew out of red. i realized that i was telling people that my favorite color was red just because it was what i had told people for years.

and then i had an color identity crisis. a lot of people really identify with a certain color more than any other color, and all of the sudden i didn't know my color. did that mean i didn't really know myself? i have always loved colors, but all of the sudden, to choose one color out of the whole spectrum that was my favorite gave me mild mental anxiety.

i tried on blue for a while. when i was a missionary, i had a companion who loved blue––i mean really loved blue. 90% of her clothing was blue, down to bright blue ballet flats that she reserved for important meetings. i realized then that i also had a lot of blue clothing. did that mean that blue was it? i do love the nuances of blue––the color of the horizon at twilight, the color of the clear ocean, the color of sapphires, the color of a turquoise stone. blue is soothing and calming where red was bold and powerful. but something about blue just didn't sit quite right with me. i mean, there's nothing wrong with blue––i just couldn't ever say it was my favorite.

i also tried yellow out. cheery yellow, uplifting yellow. not too bright of a yellow, though––more like milky yellow than sun-at-high-noon yellow. yellow is a good color. i love yellow.

but it's not my favorite.

lately, i have gravitated towards green. i now have a green laptop case and keyboard cover. i love the color of grass in the summer and the color of granny smith apples. i love the color of avocado (the inside, not the outside), and i love the color of the english countryside and scottish highlands. green is earthy, goes well with brown (which i also enjoy) and, when paired with red, is the color of christmas (which is my favorite holiday––no indecision there). but is green really my favorite? it's the color of the year, but i don't know how long my infatuation will last.

after thinking about it, i am inclined to believe that loving color in general rather than one specific color might be a good thing, and might indicate a willingness to be adaptable and try new things. then again, one can still have a favorite color whilst loving color in general. there's probably not a solution to this dilemma, but i have to explore it anyway.

what is your favorite color? has it always been your favorite?