Day 320: A Turkey Situation
Wednesday, November 24, 2010
I guess the great thing about being a semi-recluse is I am comfortable being alone - even on holidays. Being with my family would actually be punishment. I have spent many a family holiday in the bathroom - thinking of ways to tunnel my way through the wall to sweet freedom.
I think family gatherings are great. If you like the family. And if they like you.
The words "single" and "alone" on a holiday seem to evoke a certain empathy and downward stares and pity; and assumptions that the words "drunken" and "stupor" and "curled in a ball in the corner" are part of the single gal narrative.
To me, being buried under 3 comforters with a cat sitting on my belly and me trying to figure out how many seasons Law and Order has been on the air is some kind of wonderful. Add coffee - and upgrade the day to an orgasmic, little lovefest.
But there are always invitations.
It took me a long time to get used to going to other people's families homes for Thanksgiving dinner. It is just odd to be the only single person in the room above "six" and an outsider. It is also odd to plan my escape [I am the worst excuse-maker ever] and these dinners last longer than daylight savings time.
Really. I need to know how to get out of these festive Bermuda Triangles...
What to say? What to say? Hmm... "I have an early meeting" [at Walmart at 5 a.m. - too obvious.] I really must learn how to make a good exit....
Every year my friend, Janet, invites me to her home for Thanksgiving. Every year I dread it. But not this year - I am kinda looking forward to her upbeat, sunny personality.
I think because I have been questioning a friendship [not Janet's] and I have been in a suckety suckety mood for weeks because of it.
It never really phased me before. I don't think I even noticed...
The icky judgmental, negative, nitpicky behavior.
The slick comments about my past weight losses and gains that were slipped into the conversation out of nowhere.
A request [that was surely a red flag] to "tone down my happiness" when "she" was in a bad mood.
[Um. No. And suck it.]
Still it was a weird thing to admit that I didn't like a "friend" anymore [and maybe that I never really did].
Then to admit maybe I wanted a friend so bad in the past that I settled for a judgmental, negative one.
First it made me mad, then sad, then mad again.
[Or maybe I have been going through the 7 stages of "losing a friend" - 1) sadness, 2) remorse, 3) hurt, 4) anger and 5 - 7) I'm gonna metaphorically put my not-so-dainty, pedicured foot up her whatchamacallit if she says one more snooty comment.]
Yes, we have talked about our differences. Negative people seem to love to explain how they are always right. Let's call it a gift.
But it is over.
I am not giving up my perfectionist, judgmental ways so someone else can assume that role in my life.
Acknowledging and ending a toxic friendship was a tough lesson this past month. And perhaps the suckiest. At this rate, it will be just me and my cats at my funeral [if they can get a ride.]
So on to Turkey Day where my plan is to workout. Write stuff. Chill. Read stuff. Eat. Watch TV. Nap. Wear fluffy socks and sweat pants all day. And make choices I will not regret Friday.
And here is what my friend, Janet, said when I told her I couldn't handle the stress of being around all that food. I really don't want to be offered pie over and over until I give into the pressure. I really need support or I am just not coming to dinner. [This was hard, and yes, I wanted to vomit.]
She was immediately concerned and empathic.
"You can eat or not eat whatever you want. I just want you to come," she insisted.
That is what real support and friendship feels like
It is more about loving me than judging me.
My spark friends taught me that.