Saturday, March 27, 2010

The Lies I Tell

I've been pretty sick recently. The usual story - a slight irritation in the throat which was ignored, and which grew to an overall bone-deep tiredness and then the racking cough, and then the long bouts of unrefreshing sleep that felt more like drowning.

And then as I was not getting any better despite the sleep and dosing myself on cough mixture and Panadol, a trip to my favourite doctor provided the needed meds (another cough mixture and something to dry up a runny nose and fever pills as needed) and today a day later, I can actually say I feel better.

The interesting thing I've found lately is that whenever I fall sick, boundaries start to dissolve, dishonesties in my life surface and I see more clearly.

And this time the subject was me. In sharp relief. And I'm so ashamed. As honest as I think I am, I'm a coward. I run away. I avoid confrontation. I escape. I never tell people what I actually think of them. Or stand up for what I think I'm worth. Even saying no has to be done roundabout. Never directly.

I'm ashamed of how I walked out of my previous job without a letter of resignation. I'm ashamed I let my boss underpay me, never acknowledge my work and then yell at me like it was OK to do so. (Of course, he made a slight misjudgement here, thinking I would take it lying down like I had taken everything else)

I'm ashamed of how I never told someone who lied to me, jerked me around and then boasted to others about it, what I actually thought about him (true, I did it indirectly, by writing two very stinging posts and making sure he read them, but it wasn't the same thing as sending him an email). I'm ashamed that I didn't stick around to face him and show him that he was less than nothing, when I knew he was coming to the bar where I was. No, I left. And I left him and his little troupe of whores to slap their thighs and cackle wildly. One of the prostitutes being no less than the cancer patient I had wasted nights and sacrificed sleep over because she was in pain and had: "no one else to talk to."

Note to self: The moment any relationship seems more effort than it's worth, ditch it.

Abandon anyone anytime.

That's a more honest motto to live by than help anyone who needs it. Or who you think needs it. People don't need it. And if they go out of their way to secure your sympathy, there's something wrong, very wrong, in fact, right down rotten (in the state of Denmark, you might say).

I helped someone recently who called me up late at night, accused her husband of violence, led me to a merry dance of driving her all over creation for the police report, the medical report, and all the accoutrements, only to reunite with him that very day. Oh yeah, and I lent her money I couldn't spare. Not that she asked. No, she just let me know she had RM17 to her name, no place to go, no one to turn to...and then silence. She left it open. And like the fool that I always am, I dove right in.

The only good thing that came out of that is that we're no longer friends and even if he half kills her the next time, mine is not a number she can call. Well, she can call. But mine is not a number that will answer. As I said, people who go out of their way to secure your sympathy are suspect. Let her be somebody else's burden.

Because now I look at it, I realise I don't really care.

No really, I don't.

All my goodwill is just about used up.


Nessa said...

I call them emotional vampires and as soon as I get the feeling they are trying to suck me dry I put up the walls and back off. It is seductive to believe someone needs us so much but it is usually not good.

Jenn said...

Teach me how, Nessa...I need those walls in place desperately. I'm getting too tired for these games. They suck me dry and then I fall very sick and each time it takes me longer to get better.

Nessa said...

The only solution I have found is to lead an isolated life. I do not make friends easily or quickly and I keep most people at arms length. Some people don't care very deeply so i think they can get more involved. Others like all of the drama. Me, not so much. I never did tell you i got your letter. I will be mailing one back to you very soon. Oh, and i bought some Virginia Woolf - in actual book form - now if i only find the time to read.