EffortI respond to effort. I am always so pleased that someone has bothered.
Mrs Z knows that I'm upset about Christmas. Her parents come here in the morning and then everyone goes to one of Mrs Z's uncles to gather. I hate both aspects because for me Christmas is about your immediate family, not about gatherings. Boxing Day exists for that sort of thing.
I miss my parents at Christmas. Usually, I would go down to Cornwall and spend a few days with them and my sisters, sometimes with boyfriends or whatever. If I was in the UK, I might do that. But I might stay at home because now I am my dad. (Whoops! Of course that should read "a dad". Employ your own winky there.)
Mrs Z is not up to suggesting to her dad that he doesn't come here on Christmas Day but she says she won't go to the gathering and we can just do a family thing. This makes me just unhappy, rather than dismally unhappy, so I suppose that's almost a cause for celebration. I'd rather her parents went somewhere else, but this is their house and they simply would not understand why I feel that they should respect that it's my home. I will grit my teeth and bear it with ill-concealed bad grace. A problem with having children is that you have to not spoil it for them. Grimacing at the Christmas ham is probably okay. Suggesting that Mr O not talk about "slopes" or "blackfellas" is probably just spoiling for a fight (to be fair, he doesn't indulge himself so much now he's finally figured out that it's not getting the same reception it does at the bowls club).
K will not agree that she is demented but that's okay, I won't either. Of course, I have nothing to agree to, because it is part of her delusion that I'm deluded.
And doubly so that she thinks I'm deluded for thinking that!
LOL. I win. You cannot beat that and if you try, you will catch yourself in a spiral of secondguessing that will drive you mad if you weren't that way to start with.
K has made an effort to repair our friendship though. Which is good because I like having... (thinks)... diverse people as friends.
The reader I mentioned in a recent post, who thought that my novel was bogpaper, also made the effort to explain themselves. They say that they felt it was boring because they're boring and it gave them a comforting fellow feeling. Or something like that. They probably shouldn't worry too much. They're entitled to their opinion. Generally, I smooth over dissonances and take a person as a whole.
It used to surprise me when I was younger that people would say things like "I don't like A. She said something about B that blah blah blah." So the person I'm talking to does not like A because of one comment or thing. What the fuck? If you are going to judge a person, do you not judge them as a whole? How can your opinion of them be on such shaky foundations that it can be changed by one comment?
Of course, I've since realised that people really are that shallow; rather, that they tend to give so little a shit about others that they cannot be bothered with anything other than their most recent impression. It creates a vicious circle. A makes it clear that she judges B negatively because B has said something off about her mother, so C, noting that and wanting to keep A in her circle, watches everything she says about everybody, just in case. It mushrooms out of control, so that you have people who have dozens of friends but never interact with them meaningfully because they are petrified of being dropped for saying something off colour.
Which is probably why I don't have a huge circle of friends. I am temperamentally unable to be that guarded and I find the company of people who never express anything but the blandest LCD bullshit tiring.
But I can be my own worst enemy. I met a woman today, a new client. She used to work for one of my other clients, back in the day. So we're going to talk about the other people. I know that and all the way to the meeting I'm saying to myself nothing negative, nothing negative. Be positive because people want positive and eschew negative, right?
Right but of course she asks and I see the opportunity to talk to someone who knows what I'm saying about what ails me and before I can shut myself the fuck up, I'm spouting negativity like a tap with a busted washer.
But I am worried about the other people. They used to be good clients, and I rely on them for my living. But I get a bad feeling from the senior editor I deal with. I don't think she rates me. The woman she replaced did. Her boss did, but he was retrenched. She has projects she says are lined up for me that get cancelled, downsized, put back. Where her predecessor would find me something else because she understood how important they were to me as clients, this woman does not. She doesn't give me the feeling she cares about me. I need to broaden out and find new clients. Which is not easy for anyone, but very difficult for me. I know, I was lucky. I'd never be able to be a proper freelance. I have more or less been an employee of these people, just out of house. That was sort of the idea. But now I am treated as a proper freelance, so I'm going to have to find some hustle.
My problem with G, the woman at this client, is precisely that she does not make an effort. Maybe it's just her. She's new to the job. I don't know what pressures she is under, whatever. Maybe. But all you see from my end is someone who is not trying for you.