Wednesday, May 07, 2008

The Art of Selfishness


Once upon a time I found and read this book. Being a Christian, I had real concerns about what it might advocate, but I read it anyway and absolutely agreed with it 100%
In a nutshell, it urges us to take time for ourselves. Say "No" sometimes and to quit being doormats. If we don't take care of ourselves of our own needs and happiness, we become bitter and are unable to give our best to those we love.
I'm not saying chuck the DH and kiddies for some hot little college boy or purposely be unkind or greedy. I'm saying nobody likes a martyr...you know the type, giving up their hopes and plans and dreams...not willingly, openhandedly or joyously.....but with the sighs and the constant reminders of all they've sacrificed. Laying guilt trips on everyone they "gave to". I don't know why they bother.
So in recent weeks when I have been in contact with someone from my past who has never ceased to badmouth my husband or blame me for all the disappointments in her life. People have tried to "guilt" me into resuming a relationship with her. They say forgive and forget. Well, I can forgive, but I will never forget and when someone apologizes one minute and blames you the next...I don't see why I should continue to allow all I hold dear to be a target for her spitefulness. And, you know, I can pray for her, send her encouraging notes, and wish her all the best, but I don't think I should have to take that kind of crap from anybody. And I'm not going to either, no matter who thinks I'm not being "Christian".
Also, I am in a "club" of sorts. I joined it when I moved here hoping to make some friends. Everyone is nice. The monthly meetings are pleasant, but all in all it's not living up to my expectations and I don't think it's going to get any better, so I done there too. I'm sure I'll be asked "why?" by the other ladies, but if something doesn't fit, it doesn't fit. A club is not sacramental orders even if it is a church thing. I don't think I should trade in my time for something that isn't satisfying to me in any way.
Finally, I have put off doing some things because the time money and effort involved takes away from my family time. You know what? NOT doing these things is taking away from me, as a person and I am quietly getting resentful about it. I think it's time I made some changes for my sake as well as for the sake of those who have to be around me. Cranky Mama is not a fun person to hang out with.
So if you want to call me selfish. O.K. but at least I won't be miserable doing what other PEOPLE think is "the right thing" . Like the song says "I don't care what you say anymore. This is my life. Go ahead with your own life. Leave me alone"
P.S. Get a copy of this book and read it for yourself. It might do you a world of good.

4 comments:

Salesdiva said...

Amen. Good for you!

Lara said...

You know, it really bothers me when people feel that forgiveness must mean that you are suddenly best friends with the person you forgive. No. Forgiveness and trust are two completely separate things and you can forgive, but you don't have to ever trust again. It's no different with the bad talking than it would be with something much more egregious, In my opinion.

Good for you. You are not selfish.

Paula said...

I love this post, Terri. You go girl! Seems you're speaking to my heart right now, as well. I have been questioning lately "When will it be time for me?" I'm thinking the time is going to start soon. I can see it on the horizon...

Susie Q said...

I really loved reading this Teri.
I am so proud of you.
You are saying what I think about so often...

Love,
Sue