I’ve been pretty bummed out for the past couple of days, ever since that confrontation with my super charming coworker. How is it that, no matter how confident you are, no matter how much you believe in yourself and know without a doubt that you are a good person, the person you always wanted to be, how is it that as soon as someone says otherwise it feels like the rug is pulled out from under you?
It’s not that I agreed with her, it’s not that I value her opinion even a tiny little bit. In fact, I wouldn’t really care if she fell off the face of the earth. I don’t care what she thinks and, while I see that she has certain strengths in her work, I don’t think she is very good at her job overall. (In fact, her sense of that might be the reason she acted so terribly toward me. Minipiphany!)
So why? Why did her words affect me the way they did? Why did I cry so long and so often? Why did I want to run away, why did I feel like hiding? Why did I start feeling suspicious of everyone I was interacting with, wondering if they thought those awful things about me as well?
I think it was a combination of things. One, old habits and insecurities die hard. My underlying sense of worthlessness only came to the surface and was dealt with a short while ago.
I spent most of my adult life thinking people didn’t much like me once they got to know me. Overwhelmingly, people tend to really like me when they first meet me. I’m outgoing and friendly, I am open and relatable. This is not my ego, simply things people have been saying to me my whole life. I’ve always felt that an overwhelming majority of them change their mind in time. (It’s hard to be around someone so awesome all the time!! Lol) (That or people think I’m weird.)
Also, there is a frustration and powerlessness in not knowing if other people are being genuine in their dealings with you. I’ve worked very hard to hone my instincts, to get a sense of how many faces someone has and I feel I’m reasonably adept at knowing when people are full of shit. This just blind-sided me though. I had no idea she felt these awful things and it made me want to question judgements about others.
And fight or flight, I guess. They say most of us do one or the other. If you asked me a week ago, I never would have agreed that my reaction would be flight because I’ve always thought of that as an indication of fear. But I just wanted to turn it off, I wanted it to go away. I’ve done that before, shut down and walked away. But I will only do that after determining that it isn’t worth the fight.
My job? My career? My reputation? My future? MY BUBBLE?? That is worth fighting for. And I will do what I feel is necessary to take that fucker down if I have to.*
* And by take her down, I mean be professional and work along side her.**
** For now. For now.