It is amazing to me how many different costumes of ourselves we slip into on a daily basis. I started my morning with student self: I woke early, drank a pot of coffee, read a whole bunch of literature crap while feigning passion for it, and was all caught up by 10 am. And then I slipped on my power woman self: got through an amazing work-out, conducted a kick ass interview, (while sweating profusely because of nervousness, but my mantra of "never let them see you sweat" paid off thanks to my AWESOME AND ABSORBENT blazer and KICK ASS acting ability,) and had the sound bites written up and logged away within an hour. I was responsible self on the way home when I remembered to stop and buy bleach and blush, (isn't it funny the combinations of things needed at drug stores? Always cracks me up. Usually for me it's wine and toilet paper.) And then I was home, empowered, and exhausted by 5pm.
And then I became depressing self. That costume is, unfortunately, the easiest to slip into.
I had tentative plans with a friend, but those fell through and at first, I was sort of relieved. It was 6pm now, and an entire evening stretched deliciously in front of me. Would I take myself to that restaurant I have been dying to try? Maybe it was a rented movie/Thai food in kind of night? There was still time to pop in and get a pedicure at my local salon...I ran each and every plan over my tongue to see if I liked the taste of any of them. I couldn't decide. There was a haunting sense of loneliness that started to creep in around me, and unfortunately I catered to that. I put on PJ's. I heated up some leftovers. I let the apartment get dark and gloomy and I let my mind give in to ridiculous imaginations as I tried to figure out what all of my friends were doing tonight.
This is never, ever a good plan. Instead of existing comfortably with myself I was spending all of my energy in crazy-girl-land as I mentally played movies of how much fun everyone else in the fucking world was having. How is this healthy or forward-thinking or useful? Well, it's not. That's the point. Sometimes self inflicted misery is like an advil: coated in the sugary layer to make it go down easier, but if you let it sit on your tongue for awhile it just becomes bitter.
Well, my advil became bitter.
I want to be the kind of person that thrives in any situation she finds herself in. Plans broken, unexpected night in? NO PROBLEM! I have a PAINTING/QUILT/WORLD PEACE ACT that I have been meaning to try! All of my friends are out celebrating the birth of Christ and the invention of spiked eggnog? GREAT! THIS IS A WONDERFUL TIME FOR ME TO MAKE HOME-STITCHED ADVENT CALENDARS FOR ALL OF THEM! AND THEIR DOGS! Sadly, I am anything but this person. I am the person that is like, "Well, I might as well put on sweatpants and watch 7 hours of vintage SNL...by myself." I seem to love pity parties for one. Usually those parties have really good wine and Adele music. And crying into ice-cream tubs.
While reflecting on all of this I cringed when I thought of something I said to a new friend today. He happily told me he was going ice-skating with his girlfriend, and I said something snarky. "Oh. THAT is obnoxiously cute." Not only that, I said it several times. The poor kid didn't stand a chance. We ended up, to his credit and extreme patience, having a decent conversation- but when we said good-bye my horrible words burned through me my entire walk home. Why did I feel like I had to throw acid around like glitter? What the hell was so wrong about this sweet boy going ice-skating with the woman he loves? Just because I am lonely, I am sad...that gives me the right to fling my words around without thinking about it?
I guess I realized that the self that I have been slipping into WAY more than is healthy is that self. The one that basically shits on everything around her without thinking about the consequences of it all. And don't we all do that? We live in our on little costumes without poking our heads out to see what is really going on in the world? We're safe in the confines of that material we construct...but we are so cut off from reality we can't see exactly and truthfully what we are really doing.
I'm going to be ok with myself tonight...costume off. Am I in a sweatshirt too small for me because I refuse to do laundry? Yes. Have I watched all of the Melissa Joan Hart movies on my netflix tonight? Yes. DID I LISTEN TO A SONG BY HANSON? Yes. That's ok. It's Friday. It's not National-Everyone-Should-Be-Out-Partying-And-Having-Fun-Day. I am not missing out on anything. In fact, the party I have with myself right now is pretty cool. And my hair looks great.
I say I'm having the best night of all.
And I hope that couple has fun ice-skating. I really and truly do.