I give myself very good advice,
But I very seldom follow it
That explains the trouble that I’m always in.
“Be Patient,” is very good advice,
But the waiting makes me curious
And I’d love the change
Should something strange begin
One of my favorite books is “Alice in Wonderland.” Accordingly, one of my favorite Disney movies is “Alice in Wonderland.” Perhaps the best scene in the film is when Alice, alone and utterly miserable, sings the song “Very Good Advice.” Throughout the song Alice regrets not taking the advice she so sagaciously offers to herself. “I give myself very good advice, but I very seldom follow it” is a line that always slaps me across the face whenever the advice I’m giving a friend applies to my own life.
Do you remember Ezra?
If not, read this and you’ll be caught up on the sitch.
Well, this weekend there was an interesting development that made me want to pull a Sylvia Plath and stick my head in the oven.
I tend to rush headlong into dramatics when I’m upset.
Blame my theatre nerd background.
If I could I would break out into a bloody soliloquy.
Actually whenever I’m in a crowd of people, I have to suppress the urge to sing, “Please let me through!” in a boisterous baritone like Gaston from “Beauty and the Beast.”
However, that is a blog post for another day.
I won’t relate the details of the interesting development, but it left me feeling a little sad and very foolish. I spent about 20 minutes feeling sorry for myself, 15 moaning to Tesia about how I’m the most ill-used person on the face of the planet, and then another 10 swearing off of guys for the rest of my life and exclaiming, “Why bother, Tesia? Why should I freakin’ bother?”
She was very patient through all of this and tried to encourage me, but I was having none of it and drove off in a huff. If anything, Tesia was probably the most ill-used person on the face of the planet at that moment since she had to listen to me gripe for 45 minutes. P.S. it’s very hard to drive off in a huff when you drive a civic. You can drive off in a tiff, but a huff is very hard to pull off in a hybrid.
That afternoon, I sat down on the couch to bellyache some more when I received a text from a friend. She was having guy issues too. At one point she liked a guy, he liked her too, but then life pulled them in very different directions. She thought she was doing fine without him, but then she started thinking about him and asking herself that same infuriating question with which every human being on the face of the planet asks him or herself at one point or another: “What might have been?”
She was confused and in an act of divinely orchestrated irony she turned to me for encouragement. Taking into account how I felt at the moment, it stands to reason that I should have said something like, “Men suck! Screw ’em all!” I should have said something like, “Feelings are sin. Forget drugs and alcohol. Feelings are the gateway sin to Hell.”
This is what I actually said: ” Tesia and I had a talk about feelings today and how unpredictable they can be. Unfortunately, you need them. In order to love God you have to be capable of loving other people as well and that opens up a can of worms every time. I’m not saying that you’re in love with this guy, but maybe you’re not as over him as you thought. Maybe you still have one more stop on the crazy crush train before you can get off.”
When she stated that she wished she knew if this guy still felt the same way or even remembered she existed, I said, “Well, frankly, you can’t control that. Whether or not he’s the love of your life or a blip on the radar, you’re still amazing and I’m glad you exist.”
Ever feel like God is sitting up in heaven laughing at you sometimes?
And at that moment, He probably was.
Either that or He did a manual override on my free will and spoke through me so that way I wouldn’t inflict any emotional damage on my friend. I’m still not sure where that piece of advice/encouragement came from. Remember, I was feeling bitter and ill-used, not hopeful and inspiring. If my personal history teaches us anything it’s that I’ll choose cynicism 10 times out of 10. My moments of hope are few and far between.
I didn’t write this to puff up my own ego or make you think better of me. I wrote this so that I’ll remember to take my own advice the next time I start wallowing in self-pity. (Screw wallowing, I go on long distance dives in self-pity.) This inconvenient infatuation puts me in a bad head space sometimes, but I don’t think I would completely wash my hands of it if I could. If I weren’t involved in it, I wouldn’t have been able to ape maturity when my friend needed advice. If not for this inconvenience, what reference point would I have?
I didn’t really date much in high school or college. There were a few guys here and there that I went out with, but it always ended and I was always ambivalent about it. (My cousins nicknamed me “One Night with the Byng” due to my indifference.) It was no great tragedy. I didn’t sob in my room and write bad poetry. (Ok, I actually did cry once, but never any bad poetry, praise God.) Occasionally I would over analyze, but 2-3 months later, I would be perfectly fine. I would be able to look back and say, “Yeah, it was fun,but c’est la vie.” This is the first time I’ve fallen this hard for someone, and by Jove I can’t tell you why or how.
Did I really just use “by Jove” in a sentence?
I must be getting old.
Anyway, I’m taking my own advice this time and whether or not he’s the love of my life or a blip on the radar I’m still going to think myself amazing.
Despite the self-pity.
As it is, my friends and family seem quite taken with me. My friend’s response to the Ezra situation was, “Understandable, but that was some pretty deep encouragement from the oven. Seriously, your friendship means the world to me, even when you smell like burnt hair.”
I love her.