Tuesday, December 17, 2013
I give up.
I give up being mad at the people, the job, the body, the brain that did not turn out "right."
My life, in a certain light, is a train-wreck. Failure, frustration, negative cash flow, skin fungus. Bummer.
And so what?
Specifically, and for this blog, I am looking at my home and the people I share property with.
For almost twenty years, I have lived in a community/rental business where we disagree about how to spend limited money, whom to evict or offer shelter, how to share the work, where to park. It's been an ordeal and it has been a wonderful place to live. Both are true.
This little ditty is about the men who share this place with me though.
They are flawed, to say the least. They are self-serving, mean-spirited, duplicitous, manipulative, and greedy. They work the system for their own ends. They violate agreements when it serves them and viciously enforce them when they benefit.
No trailers allowed? No problem if they are mine or belong to my buddy.
No dogs? Well yours has to go because I don't like it.
You can't park by your house, but I can and will and it must suck to be you.
I want to pass this proposal so I will rewrite the rules so that I now have a quorum. The people here will vote for me, give me what I want. F*%k legality.
You get the idea.
I have pointed this out and made enemies out of many of them.
To them, I am an arrogant asshole. I sit in judgment of their moral failings, their cowardice, their selfish behaviors.
What's not OK is carrying around resentment that is making me sick. I also know that judgment is about confusing someone's behavior for who he or she is. Judgment is more about me than about them. I also know that when I assume the worst about anyone, that is what I usually get. All of this I know, but I don't yet act on the knowledge, don't yet trust my beliefs.
I can't change them, but can't seem to give up on trying.
It's back to the old Twelve Step slogan of wisdom being predicated on the ability to accept the things one cannot change, while changing the things one can.
The only thing I can change is me.
I surrender to that fact.
So, I am going to accept that they are who and what and where they are.
While I may not like them, I plan to see them and accept them. I have invited them to get together to just talk about our lives to see if there is something I can empathize with. It will be a kind of Truth and Reconciliation thing on a very small scale.
Men have been gathering in circles for millennia. Maybe we have lost the ability to do that, to work things out, or at least find a way to peacefully coexist, but who knows? Maybe it can work. It won't be any worse than what is.
I don't know how it will go, but I do know I won't try to control it. Maybe we can begin to see each other again. Maybe we can a different perspective on who we are to each other. Maybe we can even change our stories about each other.