Saturday, August 25, 2012

Pity... Party of One? Your table is ready.

When someone asks me what's on my mind, I'm usually pretty glib. I'll throw out some basic concern we all have, mention that I'm considering a part time gig as a prostitute, then give a serious look and mention that I'm one house repair away from sticking my head in the oven to end it all, if the gas hasn't already been turned off that is. Of course I follow that up with a smile just to reassure them that I am safe to be left alone and don't need to be protected from myself.

Do you know what sucks about telling someone what's going on inside your head? The cheery cliches that spew from their well intending mouths, "It will get better. Stay strong. Chin up. At least you have your health.  Things could always be worse."  I fucking hate that last sentence the most. Is it true? Yes. Does that fix things? No, it does not fix things, but that one sentence is what keeps me from telling people what's really going on inside my mind.

Sure, I have moments of light. I laugh. I enjoy the company of my co-workers and friends. My family loves me and my kids are healthy. I don't live in a 3rd world country. Our water isn't polluted. There's food on the table. People around the world have real tragedies. There are people starving, facing natural disasters, losing loved ones, and suffering terribly. I'm not. I'll put this out here right now, for anyone reading who is thinking it, "Well at least you're not pregnant/sick/homeless/jobless/etc." Yes, I get it.

A loved one said recently, "Look at how strong you are and all you've accomplished!" I smiled and thanked them, but in my head I was thinking, "Why, yes now that you mention it... This mountain of debt I have built is quite impressive, isn't it? Yes, quite. Do you know what I think I'll do? First I'm going to fashion a flag out of a scarf and stitch my family crest on it. Correction, first I'm going to find out what our crest is, THEN I'll fashion a flag. Next I am going to get my low oxygen cold weather gear and I am going to scale that bitch! I am going all the way to the top of it and I'm planting my flag to claim it forever and always as Mt. Angie! While I'm up there, the "Magically Fix It All Fairy will get me a pay raise and fix the stuff around the house I don't know how to repair. It will be a grand adventure. Grand I say!"

This is how James does it. Don't do it like James.
Tonight someone I love asked me the question I dread. "What's on your mind?" I started to let it out, when it became abundantly clear that it wasn't a financial thing. It's an every thing. His suggestion? "Do something for yourself." To which I could only manage, "I'm tired of doing everything for myself." Then I bawled like a baby for a solid 10 minutes. I couldn't even eat my damned pita. Crying screws up your taste buds and they put too much Caesar dressing on EXACTLY as I had told them not to. So I cried a little more. What started out as pretty crying devolved into full on Van Der Beek Bawl. It was not pretty. Not pretty at all.  It was an all out pity party of one, minus any good food or booze.

I'm tired of being the conductor of this train wreck. I don't mind being the one holding the bag at the end of the day, but it would be nice if, somewhere between the office and bed, someone would say, "Hey that looks heavy. Can I take it off your hands for a little bit?"  Then I realized that's what, "What's on your mind?" is about. It's about letting someone hold the bag for a little bit. It's about being unburdened for a moment. It's about resting your arms so you can pick it up again the next day and soldier on.

Let's face it. It still sucks balls and I'm still going to cry about it because it's my party and I'll cry if I want to... but things could always be worse.

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