The Fallacy of "Used to Be"



if we used to be something, we still are that thing -- now, isn't that something?

I feel a certain urgency in writing this.  I feel that if I do not put these thoughts to paper (sic), I’ll likely drown as a result of floating in them past my energy levels.  What I am about to write is both honest and possibly a bit disconcerting, but I write from my point of view through all of this, as so far, nobody has explicitly expressed negative opinions of me; well, nobody I care to give attention to.  I am about to explain my knowledge, skills, and abilities, then I will debunk a myth that several  people recite to me, and finally, I will share some advice that has become golden in my 37 years of life on this planet.  

Right now, I am a fat broke chick.  I used to live as a transgender male, on hormones, but no surgeries.  I recently stopped this due to a combination of financial issues and pausing to further explore my soul self.  In a way, I feel I am trans enough.  This journey has led me to the realization that I was not as open-minded as I thought I was, and has made me a much more diverse mindset.  I used to work for the government, for ten years, actually, and enjoyed every minute.  I resigned after a series of events triggered a very bad PTSD attack.  I used to be a hockey goalie, setting several records and winning several championships.  I used to be an alcoholic, but I sobered up.  I used to be abused by many people, but I grew up and got away from them.  I used to write really awesome short stories and fan fiction.  I used to have over 100,000 readers on my blog.  I used to weigh 345lb, but I lost 180lb over the course of four years.  I used to be all of those things, but right now, I am not. Hold that thought.

As a result of these experiences and others, I have a lot of knowledge on a wide array of subjects.  This knowledge makes me “Jeopardy smart,” which people have indicated means I don’t know the right things to move up in the world.  I think it displays how much my mind can retain, which is a valuable asset to a company -- if I can find the right company who wants someone with a good memory and knowledge base.  I also feel like I am grammatically correct, and usually good with punctuation, but I am best with spelling.  So...a company who appreciates a human knowledge bank who is also excellent with written and verbal communications, I’m your guy...or gal...

I could have put my grammar, punctuation, and spelling in my paragraph about skills, but it is second-nature to be good with these things -- it is something I consider common knowledge -- so I feel it should be placed as such.  As skills go, I am a skilled typist, clocking in at 90wpm. I am skilled in landscaping, stocking, cleaning, delivering things, catering, decorating, baking, heck -- baking showy pies, reiki, aromatherapy, weight loss, nutritional adjustments, and workout routines.  And...if raising hamsters is a skill, I’m really good at that, too.

I have a lot of abilities, too.  I have the ability to deescalate tense situations.  I have the ability to raise the spirits of my team.  I have the ability to meet the needs of the client wherever I am working.  I have the ability to encourage others to do better.  I am able to lift way more than 50lb.  I am able to put others before me.  I am able to manage a team of 15-20 with ease.  I am flexible, dependable, reliable, and loyal.  All of these things may not mix for a single awesome job or career, but they are all things I am able to do.

One pervasive comment I hear quite a bit is that I should stop talking about who or how I used to be, since it does not mean anything at present.  I feel this is not true at all.  Just knowing who or how I used to be gives me the hope that I can once again be the fit and financially sound chick that I was four years ago.  It also reminds me that I am still in possession of the traits that I had when I “used to be” all of those things.  For someone like me, I think that forgetting all those things I “used to be” would mean certain doom.  My spirits are lifted up when I look back, because right now, it’s hard to look forward.  I think it’s a fallacy that we “used to be” anything.  I believe that once we achieve something, we can hold that thing even in the present.  Even if out of practice, we still hold the ability to be great again.

The most valuable thing I have heard, which I am using as a launch pad from this point on, is to sell yourself out at everything you do. That includes your current frame of mind, physical state, goals, ambitions, blog posts, writing, poetry, sleep, showers, everything.  Go Kanye on all of it -- everything you do, everything you own, everything you eat, read, say, watch on TV, all of it.  Treat yourself, your stuff, and what you take in like a commodity, and you will eventually become a commodity, because you already are. Ignore time tables, forget that you’re on the bottom level (or whatever level you’re on), just know that you can go even higher than you are right now -- even if you’re the CEO of a major company.  Sell.  Yourself.  Out.  Because you used to be something -- and because you used to be something, you are still something.  Isn’t that something...

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