Seat Taken

There are people out there who don’t like me.  Crazy right? (Kidding)  We all have our haters.  I consider myself a fairly mature adult and there is still drama in my life and surrounding me that is comparable to kindergarten playground showdowns.  Call me a fool, but I had some magical notion that people would act their age at some point.  Well, my friends, people get older and while that’s a guarantee, growing up isn’t.  People will still find reasons to dislike you, disclude you and dis you in general. No matter what you do.  So toughen up, because you can’t win em all.

When I was in first grade there was a girl named Claire Wallace.  If any of you know this girl, feel free to punch her right in the trachea.  She is an awful person…or maybe she had an exorcism and is demon free now, I honestly couldn’t care less.  From what I’ve gathered, she had a music box filled with little pieces of paper scribbled with all of the reasons she despised me.  Two of the reasons being that she couldn’t stand that we shared a best friend and that she hated my body.  Once during recess, she told everyone to look at something in the sky and as soon as I looked up everyone else ran away.  She was the official ambassador for mean girls and her recruiting skills were remarkable.  I realize that as far as bullying goes, this was best case scenario but what a B.

I used to date a guy whose mother was not a fan. She would scope out other women for him while I was standing there.  “Oh, she is a super cute girl, don’t you think?” Or “She has a nice figure, did you see her?”  Cool story lady.  Talk about feeling inadequate.  Message received loud and clear.  I can’t say I’m upset that one didn’t work out.  To answer your question, Taylor, I believe I dodged a bullet with that one.

A group of people was leaving work and I casually asked where they were headed.  One guy went into this elaborate story on how he’s going home because his roommate made him something – I’ll be honest, I stopped listening halfway through because I was really only asking to be polite, expecting a one word answer.  When his silence suggested his long winded story was over I just smiled and said ‘have fun’.  As I walked to my car, that same group was gathered around trying to figure out where to go like some popped collar parking lot gang, including the guy with the tall tale about his roommate.  I felt like a peasant from Abnegation in the Divergent series watching all the Dauntless charade around and revel in each other’s too-cool for-school energy.  Grade school never dies.

It was a conundrum of emotion because, for the record, I didn’t want to go out.  I wouldn’t have gone even if they had asked.  Yet, I felt this awful wretched stickiness of being a teenager and not good enough to sit at a certain lunch table.  And then I did that American thing where I internalized and started asking myself what was wrong with me, because we are all a bunch of egotistical idiots.  Have I passed the age of acceptance?  Do they just assume I go home to watch game shows and knit socks for cats around the world?  I got real mental about the whole thing.  It was like when I reported for jury duty and got offended that I was not chosen.  Let’s keep in mind that is the outcome I prayed for upon arrival.   However, I’m 7% crazy so I was irritated that no one found my 30 something Caucasian self to be useful to their case.

Someone should have told me about oil and vinegar sooner.  That you can mix them up all you want, but at the end of the day, they will always separate.  Some things, specifically people, just don’t mix.  As a people pleaser, this would have been vital information years ago.  People aren’t going to like you, they are going to make you feel left out and they are going to hurt your feelings and 9 times out of 10, it’s them and not you.  Mostly because we live in a very selfish society where empathy and consideration have been tossed out the window into a dumpster full of caring and credit card applications.  Nowadays everyone takes everything so damn personally and it’s ridiculous because the only person predominantly being thought of anymore is #1.  The way people treat you is a reflection of themselves.  I wish I had known this growing up.

It’s human nature to want to be included and feel welcome.  I want to look around me and see open arms in all directions.  I want to surround myself with the people who want to sit next to me.  I implore you to be the Jenny’s of the world and say “you can sit here if you’d like”.  Pun intended.   But for whatever reason, and you may have done absolutely nothing to deserve it, some people aren’t going to like you and they’re going to tell you the seat next to them is taken even if it’s not and I’m here to tell you it’s okay and it doesn’t matter.  You’re enough- don’t ever forget it.  Don’t let the bastards grind you down – that’s a Handmaid’s Tale reference, which we will have to discuss further at another date.  Keep on shining.

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