I think I've made great strides in myself in the past five years.
Losing a lot of weight, getting a job, suffering a major injury, having a miscarriage, and a small nervous breakdown, seeing my blog take off, quitting that job, getting another one, losing that job and various other life circumstances will do that to a person. One thing I have tried to work on again and again is my self confidence.
That, and my alcohol tolerance. Ba-da-Boom!
All kidding aside, I've worked really hard to not let other people's opinions or comments get me down, to stop being someone who is so affected by the words of others, and to enjoy my life without worrying what others think of me. I think I've been pretty successful in this.
When I was a kid and took dance, the instructor told me that I couldn't do jazz because I was no good at it. She made the class so uncomfortable for me that for years I assumed she was right - I couldn't "popular dance". And I never tried, and was so self conscious when we went out that I avoided dancing at all costs.
So not the case now. I break it DOWN. Ahem.
All I've gotta say is, thank GOD I'm not a politician. I have fun.
About five hours after Matilda struck the first time, she bit again.
My husband and I have a great relationship, but it's a bit different - I'm super duper sarcastic and he's super duper nice. He sees everyone and everything through rose colored goggles. Not just glasses, because those have boundaries. He thinks everyone, everywhere, is doing their best at all times.
I, um, do not.I am also quick to notice when someone is rude, and quick to call them on it. Usually. He just assumes everyone is joking. I'm snarky and we banter back and forth. It works for us, but I've been told that it makes people think we are arguing all of the time.
We aren't. We are two people who think that they are right.all.the.time.no.matter.what - and we debate a lot. We've been married 22 years, I'm pretty sure it's working for us. There's a lot of passion in our marriage, a lot of energy and an awful lot of laughter. I love being married to my husband. He's my best friend. Even when he's annoying.
We were getting coffee (and ice cream) with a few people from our group, and I struck up a conversation with the woman behind me in line. An older woman from Queens, NY (yes, I asked her), she was complaining to her daughter about the husband. Because I'm either a) nosy b) friendly or c) never know when I should mind my own business, I turned around to comment. I shared with her the wisdom that my husband's Aunt Rosa shared with me right after we'd been married.
Men are stupid. Just remember that.
She laughed, we chatted, and I got my coffee and went to the table, where my husband was eating an ice cream. Matilda walked up to him and said
"How can you stand to be married to her?"
This was my immediate thought process.
I cannot be rude back. I can't. My husband's trip will be completely ruined, and he gave up TWO weeks of vacation in order to make the level. If I start with her, I will never stop - and he does not deserve this.
I turned to him and said, "I'm leaving. I need to go to Walgreens (which was just down the street)."
And I walked out. Without a word.
I told myself I didn't care what she said. Did the self care in my head. You are smart. You are pretty. People like you. She's a bitch and says stupid stuff all the time. You are a great person. Slowly I talked myself down off the ledge of wanting to go Muay Thai black belt on her and by the time I'd met back with my husband, I was cool.
I know I'm not for everyone. It's cool. I'm loud and crazy. I am opinionated and loyal. I'm also friendly and helpful and will give it my best shot every time. I'm a hard worker and a good friend. I'm a great wife for my husband and an amazing employee and volunteer. I'm not perfect, but I enjoy myself.
My husband told me that he thought she was joking. You can be difficult, he countered. She probably just didn't know what to say, and you've said that same kind of thing to me before.
Yeah, he thinks Mussolini was misunderstood too. And, me saying that to my husband - I'm inside the relationship. You go out there and look HARD and bring me a spouse who hasn't said something similar at least once. She is most definitely not part of our marriage. That was rude, plain and simple. Insult someone's choice of spouse - to their face???
The great thing was that the story got around, as stories are wont to do, and I had several people come up to me and tell me nice things. One man that I've known as long as we've been in this program - 9 years - told me that one of the things he likes best about me is that I have fun. I enjoy life, I scoop it up and just live it. I have a good time, every time, all the time.
Last night we went to the school skating party, and a man came up to my husband and told him - This one, right here? - pointing to me. She knows how to have a good time. I like that about her.
Live your life. You can't get it back, can't do it over, and can't save it up for a rainy day. I WANT to be that person. The one who enjoys life. Even if it's just dishes and wash and teenagers who think you are too stupid to know how to breathe - I want to wallow in life, to roll around in it, feel it sink into my pores and become part of my marrow.
I want to chew it up, spit it out and beg for more. I want to live my life, really live it - not be a bystander, watching everyone else go by and wishing with all my heart to be in the parade.
I want to be the Grand Master of the Parade - with white high boots and a gigantic baton. Shaking and dancing with everything I've got.
Haters gonna hate, indeed.