mon 15 feb 2010 08:37:05 witte de withstraat
i'm being unfair
lately i'm bothered by how i'm handling some of my social entwinements. i feel as if i'm forced to choose between being fair and being happy. which doesn't really work, because when i'm unfair i am unhappy.
last night as i was getting ready to go to bed, my housemate innocently asked me if it would be okay if she brought a child here for a few hours this afternoon. (someone she's taking care of for someone else.) i kinda flipped out on her as if she'd just asked if she could borrow my liver.
of course, anybody who knows me knows that i can't handle hanging around with little kids, especially if they need some kind of responsible looking after. to me, living as i do inside my own head, it seems perfectly obvious that if i wanted to be around kids i would have fathered some. so i felt like i was talking to someone who doesn't really know me. then i felt like i had to explain why i didn't like being around children. i resented that; i can explain why, but wasn't really in the mood. so we concluded with a sort of "i just asked, and you said no, so don't worry i'll work it out."
i felt torn up inside because, apart from when i'm directing a project, i really have a strong aversion to being the boss. it's not only against my nature, it's against my principles. the unintended effect of my attempted hospitality is that i find myself laying down house rules, like, don't do this, don't do that. and the rules i'm making are really not fair to my housemate. and yet they seem essential to my own peace.
this means something. what does it mean?
it could just mean i'm a lousy choice of a housemate. that i'm meant to be living alone.
but what's worse is, i find myself feeling i have a "right" to peace, because it's theoretically "my" place. which is clearly bullshit. i don't have a right to anything, i just have things i wish for. and for me to treat my housemate as a second-class citizen because it's "my" place is the worst bullshit of all.
complication: a couple days ago a friend asked me if i could take care of her crazy cat for about ten days in march. in the same spirit of "sure you can stay with me and sure you can move in with me too" -- ie because it's necessary -- i said "sure, your crazy cat can stay with me." and i said this without first asking either my existing housemate or my new one who is moving in today. in a way that seems irresponsible -- but i was just trying to be hospitable. and besides, i like cats.
maybe i am not meant to be at peace. maybe i am not meant to be alone. maybe these things are happening to teach me something. and maybe the reason i don't like it is because i'm getting old and set in my ways.
i just kinda had to write all this down to help me think. maybe if i talk to the people involved i can work out what's the right way to live.