Hawaii and I have an interesting relationship. Here in Hawaii I savor sun and warm winds and the clear blue ocean. And here in Hawaii I smack–continually–into my shortcomings and limitations.
Hawaii reminds me that I am a control freak.
Hawaii’s laid back nature reveals my suffocating Type A personality.
Hawaii’s open sharing makes me feel like Scrooge, miserly, money-oriented and obsessive about what’s mine.
If I just stayed in Bellevue I could feel smug. I could feel altruistic and giving and good about myself. Don’t I donate to a dozen different charities? Don’t I share my writing tips and techniques through my b-board and workshops? Don’t I treat people well, speaking with compassion and kindness?
Um, apparently not so much. At least not in Hawaii.
Because Hawaii knocks me out of my comfort zone. Hawaii is about change, and diversity and different people with very different goals (or at times, for some, no goals other than having a good time). Everyone that knows me well, knows that I operate under the very strict Protestant work ethic–which means being happy is less important than working hard–but here in Hawaii that makes me feel like a freak. Like I’m walking around with a massive suitcase of Hangups and Heavy Ambition and it’s just not cool.
I’d like to be cool. Or I’d very much like to be okay with being intensely nerdy, and ambitious, and book hungry, and idea hungry. I’ve very much like to be okay with everyone and everything instead of having constant talks with myself. “Relax, Jane.” “Chill, Jane.” “Enjoy the ride, Jane.”
If its so much work for me, why come to Hawaii? (Besides needing and wanting to see Surfer Ty and warm sun and tropical breezes and lapping azure waves?) Hawaii shakes me up. Takes me out of that blessed comfort zone and makes me confront myself, along with those ugly limitations of mine. Truly, I don’t need to control that much. And I don’t need everything to be quite so all the time. And different is good. Even if that different rubs me the wrong way.
Without Hawaii, I’d just be a princess. Diva Jane. And how tragic would that be?