Thursday, February 18, 2010

hurting people's feelings

So (sigh). I've hurt feelings here. Some I'm aware of (family drama), some I'm assuming (not hearing back from people).

I feel awful. I also feel frustrated. I never intentionally want to make anyone feel badly—I am so sensitive, so hyper aware of slights, snubs, awkwardness that I cringe at the thought that my words have put anyone in that place. Having said that, life isn't a vacuum. My experiences are so often colored, influenced by others and if I can't speak about them, I can't imagine what I'd write about. This blog has been remarkably cathartic in that I don't often speak out loud about what I write here. Would this work better if I didn't put it out there for others to read? Maybe. But what I'm going through isn't just about me. It's acknowledging the shared feelings we have, the comfort in knowing other people know.

I was thinking about this post on my way to ridiculously early morning yoga—class started at 7:30. I got out of bed at 7:01, threw on clothes, headed downstairs and then up to 19th Street before I was totally aware of what I was doing. Around 16th, I realized I was cold. At 18th I remembered there was a hat in my bag. But the time I found my mat (I pulled out 2 other purple ones before recognized mine), my parched throat whispering for water. But, I was lost in thought. Thoughts about how when I'm so sure I'm right, very often I'm not. Or perhaps, to be more subtle, I can be right but so can the other person, and how I can get so stuck in my rightness I lose track of the other side of the situation.

Also, that I can be a self-righteous asshole. Sometimes I'm so sure of my position I'll defend it to the end, regardless of its impact on other people. And even if I am right (which I generally believe I am), is owning that more important than the people I'm hurting?

Another sigh.

Sometimes, often, it's not easy to say, or even figure out exactly how I feel. Sometimes, it's impossible to have conversations with the people I'm frustrated with, to explore and figure out what's going on. And sometimes, it's not about the other person, it's about me and they get caught up in my own stuff. And then, as it gets uglier and more convoluted, I feel more misunderstood and trapped, more defensive and frustrated and don't know how to fix things.

I've got that going on right now. And since, in my life, I'm the placater, the soother, the organizer, the doer, it's almost impossible to stamp my feet and say: fuck you, this isn't fair. Or: back off I've had enough. Or: grow up and look at the reality of the situation. I quietly plod forward, hoping the negativity will drip off with no ill effects and then suddenly I'm consumed with rage. In those moments what I want to do is end everything. Forever. Often so furious I want to exorcise that person or situation from my life as if they/it never existed.

When I get to that place, I often make a fool out of myself and it takes time to rediscover balance. And sometimes a precarious balance is the most I can hope for in situations, relationships that careen all over the map.

Sigh. That's what life is like today.

1 comment:

jeremy said...

People communicate differently. That's ok. That doesn't mean there's anything wrong with either person, just that sometimes people need to be aware of how what they're saying may be interpreted by the other or how it may make them feel.

It's what I hope to do usually. Do I always succeed? No, but hopefully that's usually ok too.