Friday, May 15, 2009

On being Pathetic

Sometimes I am quite certain that I am pathetic. Not only am I pathetic, but I am the pathetic-est of all. I am sure that no one anywhere is as petty, jealous or pissed off as I am. I feel like my cat Sophie must feel when she sleeps with her face jammed into her pillow. I don't want to see anyone, I don't want to hear anyone, and I especially don't want to speak to anyone...

This morning I sat down at my computer to work on a chapter in this so-called book that I am writing. This book that, if things go the way they are going, will most likely never get written.

Anyhow I sat down to write and realized that I had two choices. I could write a chapter that made me look good, like a good widow, a smart widow, a competent and gracious widow. In short, an admirable widow.

Or, I could write the truth. I decided on the truth.

This morning I am a pissed off widow, who is tired of walking the solitary walk, who wants someone to help with the damn yard work, (sorry) the plugged toilet and college conversations. I have really had it with this journey.

Yes, yes, I know, I have done a good job and Mike would be proud etc etc etc. But he is not here, and I am, and when my sister visited yesterday, with her two stunning kids in their expensive clothes and her husband who makes more money than God, and they looked like a wonderfully, perfectly balanced family, well, something in me got mad all over again. (And yes, I realize that everybody has their problems...)

I thought I was past this, this pettiness. Usually, I am. I really am, usually, the kind of person who loves and enjoys the successes of others.

But today, I am pathetic. I decided to let myself stay pathetic until 2:00 PM. I figure after 2:00 PM I will be sick enough of myself that I will return to a more desirable state. But for now, I am rolling around in pathetic like a pig rolls in mud. I am exploring all aspects of pathetic-ness. I am allowing myself jealousy, cynicism, and pettiness.

I called up my best friend and asked her if she would join me in pathetic-ness. She said she would love to so we both got to be pathetic together. We tried to out-pathetic one another, a contest of sorts. Who could be the most pathetic? We ended up laughing and I believe it was a tie.

I think I might actually be done being pathetic in a few minutes. I don’t think that I will need until 2:00 PM.

And isn’t that how it always is? What we resist, seems to go on forever.

But when we accept our human-ness, our vulnerabilities, our dark side, and even our pettiness, when we really welcome them in, their power over us is diminished and we become free. In admitting and fully engaging with 'pathetic', rather than making myself feel something more acceptable, I paradoxically become free to celebrate my sister's good fortune.
My head is cleared, and the words that were so blocked in the morning seem to come faster than I can type.

Ahhh, life is again, good.

Mie Elmhirst Widows Breathe


  1. Wonderfully refreshing and honest post, Mie.
    Thank you!

  2. Love this post Mie. There are days when I could definitely "out pathetic" the best of them! It's not quite 2:00 yet, hope you are feeling authentically less pathetic!Happy Friday!