So I decided to take a little vacation and head to “California’s Country Music Capital”…Bakersfield. Yes, that is what Wikipedia says it is. Hmmm…My friend Julie described it as the “Armpit of California”. I’m leaning more in her direction after my 5 day stay. I did have a nice time visiting my friend from high school and her family and I did meet some very interesting people. However, vacation spot…it is not.
I was doing really well on the way there and for 4 of the 5 days, but then I started to sink. I just don’t understand how this happens…well, let me take that back, I guess I do. I received a phone call Friday afternoon that I really should have never answered but I did. It wasn’t a bad call or a really upsetting call, it just made me sad. I kept fairly busy Friday afternoon and night so there wasn’t much time to wallow in the sadness but Saturday was a lazy day and I had plenty of time to let it absorb me. By Sunday I was engulfed and ready to head back to the seclusion of my home and my bedroom.
I left Bakersfield at 6:45 this morning (Monday) and oh, the drive was horrible. There was no traffic to speak of and it was nice and cool, so I can’t blame it on that. The problem was, I had 4 hours by myself to be “all up in my head”. Yep, not a good place to be when you’re sad. I, once again, reflected on all the events of the past few weeks, playing them over and over in my head and then I went “there”. I took the most recent events in my life and decided to piggy-back them onto the last 48 years of hurt.
I started playing all those old tapes in my head…words that have been said to me by those I have loved the most in my life:
- You are so ugly
- I hate you
- I’m going to kill you
- I wish you would hurry up and die
- You’re pathetic
- Not good enough
- You’ll never make it
- I’m so disappointed in you
- You’re so stupid
- If you would only lose some weight
- and on and on and on…
Yep, I spent 4 hours in this cesspool of self-pity. I didn’t play just one or two of those old tapes. Noooo, I played every last one I could find. If I ran out of tapes to play, I hunted more down! At one point, I almost had myself convinced that they were right. I mean, come on, these were the most important people in my life and I love and loved them dearly, could they all be wrong? YES, YES THEY ARE!
It doesn’t matter how many times I lay them down, throw them away, burn them up, cry them out…they return and I must do it all over again. What I can tell you is that when they do, I do not have to play them, keep them, feed them or believe them. I don’t have to dwell on them, analyze them or even acknowledge them. I KNOW THE TRUTH OF WHO I AM!
Unfortunately, I did for awhile today; much longer than I should have but I chose to turn them loose again. Self-pity is not meant to be fed. Those words serve no purpose in my life now. Well, maybe they do. They have been my motivation to be the person I want to be and not the person anyone else expects me to be. They were stepping stones to my growth and I stepped on them again today. They are a reminder that there are only two opinions that matter in my life: God’s, then mine. Those are the only ones that matter and the only ones I need to feed.