despicable disposable me. Delete as appropriate. What is it about me that makes me so easily disposed of?
My car died 4 weeks ago (Happy Birthday me) and I have finally managed to find a replacement (just a mere 178,000 miles on the clock – I’m British. British = sarcasm) As I was cleaning out the contents of the boot (trunk to any North Americans) and transferring the contents to my ‘new’ car, I found something that stopped me in my tracks, if only for a minute.
A seemingly innocent bag containing an amusing/slutty ‘Queen of Hearts’ costume. I stood deciding which bag to put it in, the ‘throw away’ or ‘keep’ bag. Technically I can’t throw it away because it’s not mine to throw away. I could return it to the owner? Never gonna fucking happen.
I’m a self-professed bibliophile (bear with me). One that doesn’t attend the book group she loves so much which takes place at a house directly opposite my house every 6 weeks or so. The reason? The owner of the ‘Queen of Hearts’ costume. Let’s call her…
You may have gauged, if you have read a few of my posts, that I am not like everyone else. I do not ‘fit in.’ I couldn’t, even if I wanted to (which I don’t) so I’m sure you can imagine how ‘New Mummy Groups’ worked out for me when I had my daughter 4 years ago. I won’t bore you with the details but needless to say, it wasn’t a pleasant experience for me. I have always been the square peg whose relationship with a round hole is a train wreck waiting to happen.
Until one day, several years ago. I had been invited to attend a ‘pamper evening’ by the Vicar’s wife. Although they are not my friends, I appreciated the effort to include me, despite knowing that I did not hold the same beliefs as them. Usually an offer of a social event would send me into a cold sweat but for whatever reason, I accepted.
I ended up being paired up for the ‘pamper session’ with a woman named, Lisa. She oozed confidence, was loud in an fun-loving manner and in a way her confidence intimidated me. As we dressed after the treatments, we began to chat. We laughed. We ‘clicked.’ This doesn’t happen with me. Particularly with women. I do not make new friends easily. The majority of people in my life are people who have known me since my youth. People do not ‘get’ me. Those who stay in my life have accepted me. They may not ‘get me’ but have generally chosen to embrace my quirks. The majority of my friends are male. I have very little in common with women, particularly mums.
Don’t get me wrong; my daughter is my world. However, I do not equate being a good mum with the ability to talk about a buggy/stroller for 15 minutes. I like to think that when I ‘gave birth’ (via emergency section due to near-death through kidney failure) I didn’t lose my personality along with the placenta.
Along came Lisa. A woman who seemed like a ‘real’ person. She had interesting things to say and we discovered we had a lot in common. For the first time in my life, I had a female friend who lived locally to me, who I could just send a text message to saying, “Fancy a coffee?” and within 30 minutes we would be putting the world to rights. Don’t get me wrong, I have close friends but few are local, or have the sorts of lives that require about 6 weeks written notice given for any form of social interaction. Fuck that shit.
It was incredible. I felt like all of these other women who had these interactions that I’d never been privy to. I don’t want you to think this was a one-way thing. It wasn’t. The text interaction, requests to meet up was 50/50 all the way. She appreciated me just as much as I did her. I remember feeling quite touched when 2 years ago, she invited me out for coffee and cake on her Birthday, just us and our (then) toddlers.
Fast forward 3 weeks from then. It’s over. To this day I still don’t know why. I think to myself “Did I say too much?” (I don’t think so) “Did I text her too much?” (no more than she text me) “Was I demanding of her time? (No, not one little bit) “Was there a disagreement?” (Nope, I don’t do confrontation unless I feel really comfortable with someone).
One day I was doing a mail-drop to promote my business. She asked if she could come along and help me out. I agreed and thanked her for offering to help me out. Little did I know that would be the last time that we would socialise. Later that evening she joked on my Facebook page that we had made a good team.
The phase-out began almost immediately after. At first I assumed that I was just being paranoid. She had a toddler, she was no doubt busy. I told her I was free if she wanted to catch up but that I understood life gets a little crazy sometimes. No biggie. No response. A few weeks passed. Still nothing. I messaged her asking if everything was ok. I was greeted with a lukewarm response. What the fuck?
Remember, I do not do confrontation. However, I also cannot handle not knowing where I stand. It destroys me – it’s just who I am. I would rather hurt and know the truth, than have bullshit thrown my way. Fuck that. I sent her a message asking if I had done something or said something that had someway offended her as I felt that I was being ‘phased out.’ (You know how it goes – to cut contact immediately would be far too obvious; way easier to just do the trusty ‘phase out.’ Before you know it a year has passed without contact.) I assured her that I would much rather know if I had inadvertently upset or offended her and could we talk about it. She replied that she was “absolutely mortified that you would think that! No of course not! 🙂 “
I didn’t hear from her again. Now, again, What. The. Fuck?!?
When did it become so goddamn difficult for people to just say what the fuck is in their heads?
Was I in love with Lisa? No, of course not. Was she the best friend that I’d ever had? No. Did I tell her things that I’ve never told anyone else? Nope. But I took a risk on her. Here’s the thing; this is the story of my life. This keeps happening. I had given up on the prospect of making new friends at work or through other areas of life because it appears that I am just so fucking disposable. And you know what? It hurts. This hasn’t just happened with friends; my own family have done the same. So I do what nature teaches us; self-defence. For years I had let no-one in. No-one in my ‘real’ life anyway. I trusted her. I let her in. I allowed myself to believe that I could be just like everyone else. I could have the whole Friends/Sex in the City ‘hang out’ kinda friendships. Ha!
To be thrown away like that tore my heart out. Not because she was ‘one-of-a-kind’ but because now the sheer memory of her encapsulates the copious rejection that I have experienced since childhood. Yeah, I know I have ‘Daddy Issues’ not to mention excessive ‘Mother Issues’ (I’m sure Freud would have had a field day with me.)
So I stand there, with something as insignificant as a slutty Halloween costume in my hand and my heart starts to hurt all over again. I’m not a ‘woe is me’ type – I’m one of the happiest people I know (ironic for a Manic Depressive!) but I don’t deserve this. My friend joked that I must have been a real asshole in a past life because that’s the only reason that could explain my luck. I have to think, he may be right.
There is only one way to stop this discomfort and that’s to prevent it from happening again. I’ve done it before, I can do it again.
I was crying when I started this post. Yeah, ‘she who doesn’t cry.’ That’s twice in a week! For fuck’s sake (is fuck singular or plural – I’m having apostrophe placement anxiety!). But now I feel better. And that’s why I blog. Oh and Lisa, if you’re reading this, Fuck you.