You know how some people are loveable because of their personality and how wonderful they are? And then there are some people that are loved for gossip factor? I’m clearly the latter. I’ve dealt with gossip all my life. I’m starting to think I’m developing immunity to it. Sure, I get angry and rant and rave and maybe even cry when I first hear it. But then a day later, I shrug my shoulders and carry on. After all, what can I do? Stop living my life sensationally? Hah! I definitely don’t have an exciting life that requires constant scrutiny. Why then, you may ask, am I constantly being gossiped about?
Perhaps it is because I just take it?
I told A last night about the latest tidbit being passed around – by an aunt no less… Apparently my new sister-in-law-to-be is the daughter my mother never had.
Clearly, I’m a crappy daughter. Clearly. I mean, dropping everything to run and bring my mom to the hospital, bringing her to doctor appointments and tests, going shopping for her, cleaning, visiting her at least 3x a week, calling her every day, leaving my house and driving across town just to go pick up bread or sushi for them, despite what I was doing at the time… That’s not the sign of a good daughter. Apparently my sister-in-law is a better daughter because she’ll get up and clear the table and do the dishes. Yup, that’s comparable.
But, then I’m also a crappy sister. When my brother had a meningitis scare and I left work in the middle of the day to drive him to a hospital an hour away because that’s what my parents wanted (they were out of town) and then spent the whole night by his side, watching him violently shake due to the steroids he was injected with, mopping his forehead and helping him get from his room to the bathroom… Well, I’m a crappy sister because despite all this, I let him walk up a few stairs instead of going to my aunt’s place (which still had stairs and 4 noisy children jumping around) like my aunt wanted.
And, I’m a crappy wife of a crappy marriage because I let my husband go away to Vegas for a few days with his recently divorced friend.
And, I’ve been a crappy friend, a crappy girlfriend, a crappy granddaughter, niece, cousin.. You name it and it’s been said about me.
And I’ve hardened my skin. I know I’m no one’s favorite. Clearly. It’s been reiterated my whole life. I’m the “emotionless” one. I have “no feelings.” That’s the consensus – because I’m good at hiding my tears and pain under the thick veneer of nothingness they have helped me develop.
A almost had a heart attack when he heard the latest tidbit… He was absolutely livid. It took great effort to convince him that I didn’t want him to fight my battles for me. I wanted him to comfort and listen, but I underestimated how angry he would be. I’ve seen him defensive of me, but never to that extent. It was nice to know someone is on my side, that I’m someone’s favorite.
He worries that I won’t fight. That I’ll just let it go. Perhaps that is what will happen. After all, I know better. I know I bend over backwards trying to be there for people. I know that my life is a disorganized mess because of the time I spend helping others.
And, passiveness has been my method of choice. That is how I’ve dealt with Georgie and Bob and Bob’s mother and the friends who weren’t really friends. That is how I’ve dealt with the uncle who is mad that I didn’t invite him to my wedding and his children, including the one who said he was writing me off as a cousin, and the other family who is just a tangle of DNA cells that resemble mine, and no more.
Perhaps though that is the reason it never stops? Perhaps my passiveness is giving them free rein?
But 20+ years of habit is hard to break. And, I can’t see why I should waste time and energy on these back-stabbing people… I have the people in my life that care about me – the ones who love me consistently. That is enough. I do not need these people cluttering up the already cluttered life I have.