Warning: this is going to be possibly the most selfish, self-centered post you've ever read. If you are at all offended by selfish behavior, you may wish to back away now. I am writing this because I need to get it out, and I think that this is what blogs are good for. Proceed with caution...
I am now 50 years old. If I thought that I was going to wake up on my birthday suddenly possessing good judgement and sage advise, I could not have been more wrong. I am tired. Tired of trying to meet other people's expectations, tired of apologizing when I don't. All I can really do is to apologize. So here's an apology to the people who I've wronged in the past and some who I seem to continually wrong on a regular basis:
I'm sorry I wasn't more self-motivated as a child so that I could have learned to play an instrument well and given my father something to be proud of about me before he died.
I'm sorry that my career is not a raging success and that I am a terrible housekeeper and could not give my mother something to be proud of about me before she died. I'm sorry that she felt that she had to turn to my sister-in-law as the daughter she wished she'd had.
I'm sorry that I didn't make more of an effort to stay in touch with and visit my family in North Carolina in the years before the death of my nephew. I'm sorry that I tried to make amends and probably just ended up looking pathetic.
I'm sorry I was such an insensitive bitch as a young adult. For sure, I have reaped what I've sowed.
I'm sorry that I am married to a man who is compelled to display his love for me every few years with grand gestures, but that I know that he is making himself feel better about the fact that I am his on-demand verbal punching bag the other 364 days of the year. I'm sorry that each dollar that he spends on these grand gestures represents a "F-You", or a "Go to Hell" or a "F-ing C-nt". I'm sorry that I probably deserve this treatment because I am such a bad housekeeper and breadwinner and that I should be thanking God for a man who would do these wonderful things for me periodically. I'm sorry that I don't have the guts to leave him because I know that practically nobody would sympathize or understand. Except for my daughter who resents that I didn't leave him years ago.
I'm sorry that when my daughter has traumatic events happening in her life, that I try so hard to talk her through them in a way that is both loving and helpful, but that the pattern now seems to be that I end up failing and my mother-in-law rides in on her white horse and makes it all better.
I'm sorry that I have never taken psychology classes and that I have this unending need to find honorable intentions in everyone, even the people who seem to be the most dishonorable. I'm sorry that I don't believe that any bad situation will be solved by automatically assuming dishonorable intentions. I'm sorry that this clouds my judgement and causes me to betray the honorable people in my life. I can't help but feel that I will someday pay a huge price for this, but I don't know how to change myself. If hindsight is 20/20, then I should have bionic eyes.
I'm sorry that even when I am trying to be at the top of my game at all times, I will predictably let down my guard and screw up and fail to meet expectations and let people down. This is really nothing new for me, but it seems worse to me now because I go through periods when I really do feel older and wiser - but it turns out to be an illusion. I am never going to be older and wiser. I am always going to be the person who fails to live up to expectations. It is my life and it's who I am. The sooner I accept this about myself, the sooner I will stop expecting that I will ever play an important role in anything significant. The sooner I can accept that I need to question and second guess everything I do before I do it, the sooner I can decrease the disappointment that I am causing for others.
I can't tell if this really is the most incredibly selfish post or if it is just me trying to come to terms with who I really am and what I am capable of and what is beyond my capabilities. Maybe I will be happier if I stop trying to be something I'm not. What I know for sure is that I am tired of constantly being a disappointment. I never thought of myself as being someone who is scared of her own shadow. Maybe that's who I really am and maybe that's how I need to proceed from now on.
If you've read this despite the warning message, I am sorry if you are now completely turned off. I tried to stop you, but, like most everything else I've tried to say or do, I've failed. Don't feel bad. You're in pretty good company.