Reflections… a year later

I’ve been pondering something for a long while coming now.. two months in fact, and I haven’t really gotten the energy or drive to write anything about it until this exact moment. I was laying in my new room on my bed, observing the sun rising on the horizon out my window, and the clouds that block its rays from reaching my room. I recalled that I haven’t reflected or summarized my experiences in the last year in regards to a specific topic.

Besides the fact that I’m grossly overdue in posting, I figured this would be a good opportunity to put into words the muddle duddle of thoughts that have floated through my head over the last year. Yes it will be cliché, yes it’s something that everyone knows about, but I just feel like it would help to have it down in “paper.”

Some of you will recall an “event” which I described, and a follow-up that although wasn’t directly referenced to be related, did indeed hold some significance in the events to come.

I went on a date, my first official date in fact. It was a success as much as it was a complete and utter failure. I never followed up in blog form, but the result of this meeting was that I was smitten, and got the seemingly normal “run around” for about a week, and then it ended with me sending a scathing email which not only was justified but was meant to be a wakeup call for at least one asshole in the world to realize the result of their actions.

Christmas was thus depressing, as always, and although this year is a bit different (in the sense that I splurged and bought myself ridiculous amounts of stuff), feelings wise I’m still in the same situation. Scared by past experiences, embittered by people, jaded by the world, and unforgiving for distrust and lack of loyalty.

I talked to a friend (as rare as they are) about this and as always people don’t know what to say but months later the same theme began to form. I attempted to be more social and meet people in social settings, trying to make more friends and hanging out with people more. The result was disastrous and unrelenting, but towards the end when I was on the verge of giving up something happened which I didn’t expect at all: someone showed interest.

Despite nearly two hours late for a meeting, we spent a bit of time together doing a sporting activity. I liked what I saw, and I liked the seemingly honest and genuine interest on their part. We agreed that we should meet up again, but since the next 3-4 weeks would be quite busy for that person, they asked that I give them a call the following month. I agreed not thinking of the big picture. This only shows how desperate I was to make friends an the lengths that I was going to.

As promised I sent encouraging sms a few times during that “busy” month, which went appreciated, and as expected I gave a call the month later, as requested. In fact it was a bit unorthodox, but I decided to invite this person to a formal event that I was going to. They were flattered, agreed, and were all excited about it. Circumstances arose that didn’t allow this to happen but I salvaged the plan and organized to go out for dinner that night instead of the formal event. Essentially it was an exchange of formal events, because I made reservations at an unknown restaurant that proved to be fantastic.

The evening dinner was amazing. Conversation flowed, people around us seemed more interested in our conversation than their own, although unspoken as such it was a date. We both dressed up, we both seemed interested in each other and things clicked. It was my intention from the get go to pay for dinner as it was in fact me who asked them to the formal event; when I asked for the bill this is where the stink started to come up. After protesting, I didn’t allow a cent to be put down on the meal by my eating-buddy as I had already decided weeks before that it would be on my tab. In retrospect I should have said that first…

Either a genuine interest in continuing the evening, or feeling guilty for not paying for dinner, on my “friend’s” request we did a walkabout and went for a drink. Everything seemed to flow and was all completely appropriate. I was nervous, but given my past run ins with douchebags I went into the situation with a “well it’s not like the worst hasn’t happened already” attitude, and I was open minded and came off as confident I think.

After the most awkward handshake ever known to mankind (especially considered I had observed several signs of expressed interest, namely “accidentaly” footsies, being bumped into a lot while walking despite not drinking, etc.) I proceeded to sleep. As requested he sms’ed me that he got home safely, as I was worried given how late it was in the evening. That evening I was asked to make another meeting the following week, and it was agreed upon that they would call me.

That call never came. And I continued to be patient playing the “I know they are busy” card. The call never came for two weeks and the week that we proposed to do something verbally went by without any communication. After three weeks I got really discouraged and after an afternoon of bitching to my bus girlfriend, I sent a bitchy sms with the basic intent of guilting them for not returning phone calls or sms’ as they promised. The response was absolutely ridiculous in my opinion, citing that furniture fell on them weeks before and they were still recovering.

I expressed my sympathy but continued on my way, then realized “just because something falls on you doesn’t make you completely incapable to answer phone calls or outstanding sms messages on your phone.” I got upset and decided to not rock the boat, despite the fantabulous story presented to me. For the record also, I showed the string of messages to several people and they agreed that it was ridiculous. I wasn’t being obsessed or crazy, I was just seeing something for what it was.

And this is where it leaves us now, and it’s the reflection of this more recent occurrence that made me think of the past occurrence. Something positive did come of this: I was visibly more comfortable with the situation half a year later than the initial circumstances.

Further to this, there was an additional people that I communicated with that made up just about every excuse in the book to not hang out with me in a casual social situation. After calling them out on their disinterest they blamed the whole thing on me and tried to make me seem like the bad guy. I got really upset, and told him off. A few weeks later a came around and softened my stance, but stuck with my principle being summarized “If you want to make something happen then you’ll do it, if it doesn’t happen then obviously you don’t want it enough.” I think it’s a fair statement.

And so we were at a stalemate and this was just trying to make friends even.. not even dating. Eventually we met for lunch and the conversation was completely monopolized and one sided. I have the uncanny ability to either avoid talking about myself, deflecting attention on myself away, or seeming to not care about the conversation being monopolized. I left that lunch thinking “well that wasn’t so bad” but later in the day realizing “wow, I just realized that I wasn’t asked anything about myself.” They simple rambled on about themselves, prompted by me to continue to avoid awkward silence, and then when I did try to offer some sort of connecting context I got shot down.

It was that moment that I realized that the nearly dozen people that I met over the last 2 years concentrated on themselves. I realized that it was the common thread between them all and then it was compounded by the fact that I’m the type of person to be genuinely interested in what other people are saying. It didn’t matter to me at the time that they weren’t expressing interest in me, because I was interested in what hey were saying. The words “self absorbed” came to mind when I realized that I care more about other people than myself.

And then I wondered, is everyone like this? I queried many people and they all had the same response. So am I left to think that all people are self obsessed, and I’m the only one that doesn’t act in such an egotistical way?

It would go against my personal ethics and principles to go all egotistic, but I think there should be a balance between self awareness, and awareness of others. Other people don’t seem to notice this, or think about it. Maybe I’m just overly philosophical, but to me it matters. Especially since I was blaming myself and finding just about every reason humanly imaginable to blame myself for things that weren’t entirely my fault.

Although I’m not strong enough to use the “they are worse off not knowing me,” simply because I’m the one missing out as well, I do think that many people don’t appreciate me as much as I deserve. I put effort into friendships, I return calls, I return emails, I do good upon others, I respect others opinions and try to understand new perspectives. I’m treating others how I wish to be treated, but why aren’t they doing the same for me?

Why is it so difficult to return a call or a simple text message, or respond when I ask them to do something. The default response is “find new friends” but isn’t that what I’ve been unsuccessfully trying for the last two and a half years?

2 comments

  1. I think the thing that you haven’t sufficiently covered is your ability to relate to other peoples’ lives. You struggle to understand how people work and what makes them tick, and sometimes seem to take offence at things they say such that they feel like they need to tread on eggshells. I know we’ve gotten closer over the last few weeks, although then I tell you that I genuinely like you there’s often a negative and unexpected reaction. I hope you realise that I and many other people do appreciate you, and try to accomodate your sensibilites so that we don’t cause offence.

    1. And that’s the reason why I’ve always regarded myself as socially awkward. I can try to see new perspectives but the only things I can see, are through my own set of eyes. I can’t read people’s minds or understand feelings, emotions, desires, or wants the same way as other people.

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