Sunday, May 8, 2011

Pragmatic: of or pertaining to a practical point of view or practical considerations.

My daughter used the word "pragmatic" the other day in describing me.  I had mentioned to her how many people have commented to me about how easily I seem to have adapted to our new life here in Michigan  and she said, "Well, Mom, you're very pragmatic."  So I looked it up and I copied the first meaning of the word, which I've put up there in my title.  I'm hoping this is the definition she was alluding to, not some of the others:  officious, meddlesome, interfering, dogmatic, and opinionated.  I don't mind being practical.  But I surely don't want to be meddlesome and opinionated.  Or interfering.  Or snobby.  Pompous. 

Oh yeah.  I'm definitely practical.  I'm very literal.  I take everything at face value.  I'm a right-down-the-middle-of-the-road kind of thinker.  I'm not frivolous.  And I am not impulsive.  Compulsive, yes.  I don't suffer fools gladly.  I weigh things very carefully and when I've made a final decision it takes a lot to convince me to do something differently.  I can't stand indecision.  If we're lost, we're lost: let's go get directions.  I don't think I have a bone inside of me that can be embarrassed. 

And yet, even with all that practicality, I can get flustered if I come in on the end of a conversation and have only heard bits and pieces of what's said, then not understand why what I say confuses everyone because it has nothing to do with what they've been talking about.  I can drive my family insane with talking in circles.  I don't get to points very quickly.  My mind wanders down this path, switches mid-stride, and veers off on this fork, that fork, and any other fork in the road it comes to that looks interesting, that has possibilities.   I am always being told I'm very, very funny.  Which, for someone who is so pragmatic, I find that funny.  But I guess I am.  Others ought to know.

But I'm tired of writing about adjustments.  Newness of surroundings.  Adapting.  I'm ready to get back to the real meat of living, the everyday-ness of my life.  To the point where, once I'm out driving...if my mind wanders...I know where I'm at when I come back to myself and not half-panic wondering where I'm at, if I missed a turn or took too many.  To no longer wonder when I go on to I-96 if I'm heading towards Detroit or away from it.  I'm pretty good at north and south, but east and west here still throws me for a little loop.  I want to be able to say the cute little garden center I spotted the other day was on the corner of Merriman and 7 Mile Road...or, wait...was that 6 Mile instead?  Nah, maybe it was Farmington and 5 Mile.  To know where a favorite Mexican restaurant is, and not have to look on Google to find where the Goodwill in Canton Township not need driving directions to find it.  To know where the post office in Livonia is.   To no longer feel like the new kid on the block. 

There is progress.  I know how to find the library without having to think it thru every time I go. I know where to turn to find the kids' house, even tho I still have a tendency to keep driving past it, then have to back up.  I can find my way to the warehouse where everyone works without going the wrong direction on the freeway.  I can go grocery shopping and remember which aisles certain food items are on.  I don't drive past our street any more.  I know which house is mine as I come up to it...and, believe me, with every house on our street being brick ranch bungalows, that in itself is a miracle.

I learned a long time ago:  just go with the flow.  Don't sweat the little stuff.  Ease into things.  And if I do all that it's pretty amazing how life just keeps on keeping on.  One day at a time.  One step at a time.


Rob-bear said...

Pragmatic — practical — is probably your middle name.

I have a bit of a challenge seeing how a "right-down-the-middle-of-the-road kind of thinker" with the bit about how your "mind wanders down this path, switches mid-stride, and veers off on this fork, that fork, and any other fork in the road." If it works for you, that's the main thing.

MissKris said...

I think you need to know me personally to understand THAT one, Rob, lol!

Bridget Locke said...

It was the good pragmatic. :D

Sandra said...

I know what you mean about your mind taking "a turn." Sometimes, my mind flits like a kite dancing on the wind or, at times, like a little girl's feet playing hopscotch on hot pavement. I start "here" but end "there" and sometimes the journey is a puzzlement to me.

Anita said...

Your experiences are reminding me of what I've done in the past when I've moved from place to place. I remember once being so disoriented; I was in a mall in Columbia, MD, but walked about looking for stores that were in a mall in Richmond, VA.

God only knows if I can handle another move at my current age!

So Kris, be a good example and inspiration to us. Who knows when one of your readers will have to relocate. :)

HORIZON said...

The more l read about you the Kris- the more l like you :) i smiled more than a few times when reading this- l can relate to it. Especially the ending, 'one day at a time, one step at a time.'Yip! xx

Steadfast Ahoy! said...

When I moved from the north shore of Lake Ontario to the south shore, my whole compass got turned around. It took at least a decade before I found north again...and that was when I didn't have grey hair and a GPS!!!