For a long time now I’ve seen opportunities come and go in my life. We’re talking OPPORTUNITIES. The blue-ribbon-level stuff that you’d normally consider once-in-a-lifetime, but have actually been tossed virtually into my lap muchos-time-o’s. It irks the living shit out of me that I’ve never actually done anything with the opportunities that fate has lobbed at me, over and over again.
I guess the reason I got so frustrated with G’s psychosomatic episodes is that I see a reflection of my own foibles.
When I hit a legitimate chance to succeed and even excel, I find myself blocked at every turn. It’s an unconscious form of self-sabotage, I know it, yet the sabotage continues. Whether it’s stuffing my face when I’m not hungry or letting a deadline slip away from a real chance to break into professional writing venues, the ultimate blame lies within. I have started really focusing on a change in all corners, but my mental (and sometimes physical) paralysis marches to the forefront every time. Not surprising, as I’ve been so thoroughly indoctrinated to believe I’m substandard in every way.
A part of me knows I’m capable and intelligent. I don’t believe I am or ever have been beautiful or even pretty, so my entire psyche rests on the two previous cornerstones. That’s its own catch-22, because I hate being wanted only for my work ethic and capacity, yet those are the only things I value in myself – and even then I feel I fall short.
Uphill battle, ya think?
Bluesleepy‘s most recent entry invoked a kind of soul searching we all do from time to time. It’s pretty much an unwarranted self-assault, one that was actually launched by our parents or guardians, the people who were supposed to love us. The only time they leave off is after they’re certain we’ll pick up the litany and continue it mentally for the rest of our lives.
My mother used to do everything under the sun to tell me that everything wrong with my life was a direct result of some sin, imaginary or otherwise, that I had committed. Her view on the world that only perfect people were good enough and I would never, ever approach perfection no matter what I did.
As I put it to Bluesleepy – and should have put it to my mom: “Hey kettle – you’re black!”
Much as I loved my mother when I was younger, I look back and see that she chose to stay with an abusive husband, and in so doing condemned her children to hell on earth. Beatings were only a small part of it. She chose that life; we as her children weren’t given any choices until we were old enough to move out. Then after we did, she would do everything in her power to guilt us into calling/visiting her, whereupon she spent the whole time telling us what losers we were.
I don’t hold with the current view that we support our children unconditionally. When our kids mess up they need to know they messed up. But nobody messes up every single waking minute of their lives, either.
It was a little liberating for all us kids to discover that our holier-than-ANYBODY mother had an affair back in the day. Honestly I couldn’t blame her for cheating on my dad, given the terror she lived with every day. Having an affair with a preacher probably wasn’t a smart move because he wasn’t going to do anything to support her. But all those years she spent berating us, no doubt it was an extension of berating herself.
This from me, who thinks cheating is pretty much the lowest of the low!
But it just reinforces what some of my readers told me back when I first said what I did about cheating – watch out when throwing stones. Sometimes they come back harder than a boomerang. I was lucky enough mine came back with a light tap on the shoulder.
There is another company event coming up next month. G said I should RSVP that we’ll be there. I’m saying no. I frankly don’t feel like doing the whole last-minute-illness thing with G. I’m not going to beat him up about something he can’t help, but neither will I subject myself to getting my hopes up again. Saying nay isn’t hurting anyone and it may well save my sanity.