This post is a response to the “Look into Your Eyes” challenge by Swift Expression.
Look at yourself in the mirror. Make sure the mirror is big enough for you to see your whole face, and do this in broad daylight. Look yourself straight in the eye and don’t flinch.
Say out loud (don’t look away) “I am a good person. I am a good person. I am a good person.”
Write about the experience. Was it easy? Did you struggle? Could you do it? If not, why not? If you did, how did you react? Serious? Laughing? Sad?
Did you tell yourself, this is silly? If so, why do you think you said that?
Write it all down, and share!
Okay, that was interesting. I shall transcribe what just happened:
Scene 1: Research
*Reading Art of Stumbling’s entry*
Shit. If she’s having issues with it, I’m going to have a damn breakdown. This is not going to be fun. I’ll do this tomorrow… yeah, like that will make a difference. I have cookies on my desk. Cookies are good. If I have a breakdown, I’ll just eat all the cookies as my reward. Okay. Fair enough. Let’s do this.
Scene 2: The Mirror
And so begins the lovely conversation I had with myself:
This is stupid.
Yeah, because you are afraid.
I’m not afraid.
Don’t lie, it’s unbecoming. Like you could lie to me anyway…
Why are we doing this again? I just have to write about lying this weekend. I don’t have to do this. I don’t want to.
We are doing this because we need to. Now shut the hell up and do this.
“I am a good person.”
No, you’re not.
“I am a good person.”
No, you’re still not.
(At this point, I started snickering softly and smiling. Leave it to my conscience…)
“I am honest.”
Yes, you are.
“I try to be a good person.”
Yes, you do.
Scene 3: Reflections
My conscience is right. I am not a good person. I try like hell, but I’m not someone that is just blessed with happiness and sunshine and eternal goodness. I eat eternal goodness for breakfast and by dinner time, I’m tucking into my favorite meal of jaded acceptance and broken dreams. Not quite that dramatic, but I believe you get the point.
The truth of the matter is that I am a greedy, selfish, irrational bastard. Let’s take a walk back into the last year of my life. I lost Luis because I was a demanding, uptight, controlling, jealous, insecure, unyielding, stuck up, entitled, spoiled bitch. I made the stupidest choices I’ve ever made.
I let people into my life that I shouldn’t have, I ignored the signs that people were untrue and dishonest, I was too open with people that I now know wanted to destroy me. And guess what? They won. I think the high point of this entire year was getting a bad evaluation at work (done by a manager who was upset I wasn’t romantically inclined towards him) the morning after Luis left, the morning before my sister moved away, three days after my car caught on fire… I could go on.
I, Kate, the assistant manager in charge of the front end, got an evaluation that was merely “acceptable”. In 5 years, I had always received “above average”. My career was in the toilet, and I knew it at that moment. The other office staff were in the corner gossiping about the dissolution of my engagement. Every time I looked at my left hand and saw that my ring wasn’t there, I’d start to hyperventilate. I completely lost it. I had a breakdown right there in the store managers office, right in front of my manager. I knew I couldn’t do it anymore. Everything in that place reminded me of Luis, the man that didn’t want me anymore. I gave him the rest of my entire life without so much as blinking and he just… walked away. Stupid, stupid, stupid!!!
I removed a lot of the people who thought they were my friends without so much as a word of warning. I completely dropped off the grid. My best friend accused me of selling him out on my blog, when I’d never written a word about him that wasn’t praising him or introducing him to my readers. I dropped him without even a word. He finally got the message a month later that we were done. I got a nasty voice mail, but the only thing I could think was “No, we were done the second you opened your uninformed, insecure, conflicted mouth.” The people that had ever wronged me in the past, gone. Now that I’m having issues at work with a crazy coworker who thinks that she has grounds to personally attack me, I’m looking for other jobs so I can be done with that place too. I am fucking ruthless. I have such a big heart that is full of love, but something happens and I just literally do not care if that person lives or dies. Complete, irreversible apathy.
Is that the mark of a good person? Hell no. It doesn’t matter how many kind words I say, how often I volunteer, everything I give to charity… none of that changes the fact that at my core, there are some downright vicious, scary things. So am I a good person? No. None of us are. We are humans, and we have the same emotions. Some of us have the same struggles, but sometimes it’s harder to relate. I know that I want to leave this world a better place, and I know that it makes me happy to bring joy to other people. Doing the right thing helps me make sense of the world I live in. I aspire and long for all that is pure and good, but I will never fully get there. It’s impossible. But I’ll be damned if I’m not going to try my hardest to get as close to that ideal as I can.
So that’s your daily dose of honesty and encouragement everybody. I’m a shitty person, and so are you. We all suck. A lot. But that’s how the world is, so let’s make the best of it by trying to do right by one another from this moment on.