You know how sometimes it seems like you’re Doing The Right Thing and it ends up totally biting you on the ass? No? Maybe it’s just me. I am incredibly talented when it comes to digging large holes which I later trip and fall into and wonder what the heck happened.
So, take my current, ahhh, situation. I’m fine! No, really, I’m just fine! Perfectly fine! See, that’s my stance the majority of the time. I mean, sure, technically I am so far from fine that I remember fine about as well as I remember high school trigonometry, but I am not going to unload on every random person who asks how I am. Or on my coworkers. That’s what the internet is for! Haha!
Wait, where was I? Oh yes. The fine and the not-fine and the Doing The Right Thing that totally isn’t. It’s all coming back to me now.
So here I am, not-fine, yet trying to get along as best I can, doing what I need to do, etc. And despite all of the incessant whining I do here, it may surprise you to know that I actually manage a pretty good front, most of the time. And that’s fine with me; my coworkers do not need to know I’m having panic attacks, for example. Every single person I know does not need to hear the blow-by-blow of whether I managed to get through the day without ativan.
This is otherwise known as putting up a brave front. It comes in handy. Particularly with the kids.
Anyway, a while ago–before this craziness began–I agreed to sing at a wedding. The wedding is this coming weekend. To be clear: I was not asked very far in advance. I assumed that something had happened to whomever was originally slated to sing, but I didn’t ask, because I didn’t really care. I was asked, I said yes; whatever.
Last week, I realized I didn’t think I was going to be able to handle this commitment. I called the person who hired me and said, “Hi, please don’t be angry, but is there any way you could replace me? I don’t think I can do this.” We talked, and she made it clear that replacing me at this point would be nearly impossible, and asked me what was going on. I gave a very Cliff Notes version (“I am experiencing some severe anxiety”) and she assured me I’d be fine. In fact, she went on and on about how I always manage to deal with everything and this would be no different, and it wasn’t a very long song and it’d be no problem and she’d see me for rehearsal.
I really wanted to believe her. I didn’t, actually. I knew she was wrong. But she obviously believed I’d be fine, and hey, that sounded good! Plus she made it sound like only a real loser would back out now, and since I’m JUST FINE I don’t want to be that loser!
Mostly, I just didn’t know how to say “No, I am not fine.” I expend so much energy pretending to be, even when I admit to anything less, people don’t believe me.
So another week went by, and instead of feeling better I am feeling worse, and the thought of getting up to sing at a wedding when just getting out of bed in the morning is a herculean effort is enough to make me cry. Literally. There is just no way.
Naturally I did the mature and sensible thing befitting a person of my Perfectly Fine status. I called my friend the pastor’s wife and cried all over her until she offered to have her husband (who would, after all, be performing the wedding in question) intervene on my behalf. I explained that I’d already attempted to withdraw without success. My friend assured me that they would figure it out, not to worry, etc.
Tonight I found out that the music director not only pitched a hissy, she demanded that I call the bride personally to apologize. Because I am naughty. And, apparently, 4 years old.
Listen, I understand that I suck. I understand that she’s pissed and probably embarrassed and that the bride is going to be disappointed and all of that. I get it. But 1) I’ve worked with this woman for 5 years now, and she knows I don’t just blow stuff off or randomly decide to let people down, 2) I tried to give her enough notice to find a replacement, and 3) If I can’t handle doing this gig because I’m having so much emotional distress, how on God’s green earth does any thinking person with a soul even SUGGEST that I personally phone the bride?
“Hi, is this Bride? Yeah, this is Mir. I was supposed to sing at your wedding this weekend. Except I’m not going to, because I suck. Also because I am losing my mind, but I’m sure that’s completely secondary to you having your dream wedding, so, um, my sincere apologies. I have to go slit my wrists now, but I’m sure you and your husband will be very happy.”
I don’t think so.
Now, in addition to my frustration and zillion other less-than-positive emotions about my current situation, I am FURIOUS with this woman for not having a shred of compassion for what is already a fairly agonizing situation for me. I am already completely mortified. I don’t expect her to tell me “oh, that’s okay” but come ON.
In case you were wondering, I also haven’t finished that report for work, I skipped the “Parent Appreciation Party” at school, and I packed Monkey the same sandwich two days in a row because he didn’t eat it the first day. I’ll be issuing all apologies on a first offended, first served basis. Feel free to add whatever transgression I’ve visited upon you to the list and I’ll be sure to get to it… sometime.
Right now I’m a little busy standing in the corner.