Today I am in a much better frame of mind despite being very tired. I woke up before 2:00 so it will be a long day, but I'm really happy about what I accomplished yesterday. Not long ago I was reading about emotional maturity. I work with a woman who has had a crush on a guy for more than a year. I didn't meet this guy right away, I was talking to her about a problem I had and she thought he might be able to help him. I ran up to him when I saw him, talked to him for a minute or two, and my friend and I still laugh about the conversation. She said it was so funny because as soon as we were done talking to each other we both turned and looked right at her. He's not my type, but he had given me what information he could, and I felt like he genuinely wanted to help.

Sometimes I wonder why dating isn't taught in school. She didn't think he liked her and I was sure that he did. This went on for a while until we hired a new guy. There are days when I really miss him, I guess he works at Target now and I wonder if I will ever see him again. I've asked her for his number, but haven't received it yet. When the guy my friend liked stopped shopping at work she was very upset. I was too actually, not because I am madly in love with him, but because it makes me sad when two people I like seem to have trouble understanding the other person. Last night we were on the phone when she said that she just wanted him to feel comfortable shopping there again.

I told her I had new homework for her. I suggested she try understanding him and accepting the way that he was in terms of his personality. She wanted to change him, she needed things he couldn't give her, she claims she didn't lie to him, but she wasn't fully honest with him and a relationship built of half truths is unhealthy and not going anywhere positive. I feel like she owes him an apology, but since they aren't on speaking terms she's going to have a hard time getting it to him. I'm her friend, I like him as far as I feel like we have a good relationship, I don't have any sort of romantic feelings for him, he makes sense to me and I trust him. I don't think it is any more complicated than that although she tries to make more of it at times.

Lately she's been interested in another guy at work and I told her what I thought about him when she asked me. I don't care for him, she thinks I am being too hard on the guy, I say anyone who treats your friends like dirt and flirts with women at work when he has a girlfriend isn't anyone I'm going to think very highly of, and I don't find him at all attractive either. I've done what she did, was dishonest with myself and another person. I value honesty even when I'm hearing things I don't like. I owned it, apologized, and I'm glad that I did. Her argument is that he owes her an apology and I actually agree with that, but someone has to make the first move and as long as you are trying to share blame and avoiding responsibility, you aren't growing the way that you could.

She has to change to get him back. He wasn't ever hers to begin with, he did play some games with her, but I feel the blame, if it can be sliced like pie, falls more on her because she told him she liked him as a friend and wasn't interested in a boyfriend. That last part may have been true, but the first part certainly wasn't. She told me it feels like I am always taking his side, I said often I am because he makes sense to me and she doesn't. I would be furious if someone treated me the way she treated him. She doesn't know what she wants, gives off mixed signals, and then complains when men are confused by her behavior. I've done a ton of really stupid things myself, I'm not condemning her, but I don't like how she tries to make it his issue instead of her own. I think he's a great guy and am probably more than slightly jealous of her because she is so friendly and outgoing.

Sometimes I don't know why I bother. She is all about herself, her problems, she'll listen to me for a split second before bringing the conversation back around to herself. She isn't calculating, but the effect is the same and it can be very draining. Last night I was so mad I finally told her I wasn't going to go back to him for PT. She protested and said he was probably looking forward to seeing me again and I said this was not worth the friendship. It ticked me off because I didn't have anything to do with their drama and probably helped both of them more than anything, but I was done with her snarky comments and told her I could easily find someone else since my initial prescription had been elsewhere anyways.

She told me to go back to him and that she had been feeling sorry for herself. She apologized and I told her I forgave her. That is one thing I like about our friendship. It shouldn't come to that, but at least she apologizes when I tell her I need one. That means a lot to me, more than it should probably. I'm so used to being the bigger person and letting people take more than they give that the rare sincere apology carries more weight and value than it should. I gave her an example from my own life. Yesterday I went to my manager and told her I owed her an apology. I could have let things slide and avoided the confrontation, but I sought it out instead because I know that laying yourself open to those criticisms is what strengthens trust in relationships.

I turned a corner with the situation at work. The airport was a tempting possibility, perhaps if I didn't have the experience I had Saturday it would be even more appealing. There's something off about that place, I don't know what it is, it makes me sad to think that I could have had a really neat and interesting job, but, my friend and I were talking the other day about how fortunate I am to be able to work where I do. I owe such an incredible debt to my manager, it feels as if I can't begin to pay her back for what she has done for me and taught me. It's not just her. Other people too, I need what I'm getting from those people who do love and care about me at work. 

It feels wrong to work there at times. It feels selfish, like I am capable of earning more, so I should. I dislike the term cougar as it is applied to older women, but the boss I used to have was one. She was lavish with praise, told me how wonderful I was and how she wished she had a team of people just like me. She wore me down with her empty promises, she couldn't get back to me when I emailed her, when I called I left a lot of voicemails for her, I made excuses for her to others, and I find myself doing that at work now for certain people who should be cut loose in my opinion. I'm frustrated with management and their poor handling of many things including the people in my department.

This is a small thing in some ways, but a great example of how this company works. I wrote elsewhere about having an adversarial relationship with a fellow employee. It turns out we both have birthdays in December. I don't know how he feels about his birthday, but I do not love mine. The company posts birthdays and sets out cards for us to sign. I feel like refusing to sign his is rude, but I don't want to get into trouble if I do sign it. They have created a no win situation where we are forced to see our names on the same sheet of paper and I don't like that either. Obviously we had no way of knowing whose birthday was when, but it feels so awkward and uncomfortable that I'm surprised nobody came to me and asked if I wanted my name off the list this year. Hopefully they gave him that choice, but it would be out of character for them.

I realize that I am an overly sensitive person who thinks about things too much and I'm trying hard to put it into perspective. These people have jobs, they are busy, and maybe they posted the list without a second thought which would be a good sign since they don't think either of us will care that we have to be on this stupid birthday list together. My birthday isn't a secret, but I really don't know why they put up this list, it feels representative of a culture that doesn't really exist at work. Like we are all friends and happy that someone we work with is celebrating the day that they were born. Maybe I just have a hangup about having an after Christmas and before New Year birthday. Maybe I am just super tired of the high anxiety levels at work and just want a moment's peace every now and then.

Today everything seems magnified. The good seems dim, the pain seems darker and louder, I got some writing done, but my stomach feels off. I didn't sleep well at all and want nothing more than to crawl back into bed with the covers over my head, but I need to get ready to go to that funeral. I know it will be sad and I am prepared for that. It will be nice to see family and I'm excited about that. The main takeaway is I have a woman in my life who fully and deeply supports me and right now I need that way more than I need to learn how to fly. It's humbling to have to admit that. I want to be older and more mature instead of just feeling silly that I haven't figured these things out at my age. But life goes on and I will too.

Until next time,


P.S. This simultaneously feels like the exact right and very wrong thing to do and I find that very unsettling.

Much love,