[I'm not a Xangadult; I'm just a little emo from time to time. There's a difference.]
So I've noticed something about my character that's ugly, and I want to change it. I need to change it, I think, because it may be one of those impediments from future growth and happiness.
See, I have trouble being happy for other people, when it comes to relationships. New relationships, advancing relationships, engagements. (I'm not so bad with marriages, usually because I've resigned myself to the engagement for long enough that it's not a big deal.) But that whole "rejoicing with those who rejoice" thing, I'm still having trouble with in this area.
And it's not because of any feelings I have for one of the parties involved (...usually). I feel this way about people I haven't even "officially met"--internet friends, people on the street, people in movies and on TV.
I think one of the reasons may be that I envy the feeling they're experiencing. The rush, the thrill, the excitement of it all. I find myself getting envious of that. And green is not a good color on me.
Sometimes, a moment's feeling of jealousy does rest momentarily on the person. Reading on some blog written by a girl I used to know a post about her new boyfriend, I'll feel a random pang of jealousy. I'll chuckle at a quote from their cute little conversation, and a sudden, brief thought of "That should be me" arises, even when it's someone I've never been interested in before or since. But for that moment, I feel the sting.
It sucks. It's lousy. It's ugly for me to feel this way. But I do sometimes. I miss being in love. And instead of "doing something about it" (like what? mail-order?), I pout. (And blog, unfortunately for you.)
There's sometimes another reason I can't be happy for people who find themselves in new or deepening relationships: the fact that things will change.
True story: I got together with two of my oldest friends not too long ago. These are my boys. We've been close since high-school, even before. And while many (most?) of our classmates and friends have gone off and gotten married or whatever, we three have remained singles. Bachelors. Los Tres Amigos. Whenever I start feeling blue about sitting on the bench, as it were, I could always take a small bit of solace in the fact that I wasn't alone.
Well, when we were setting up plans to hang out and play video games (because some things truly don't change), one of them said, "Is it okay if my girlfriend comes too?"
I beg your pardon?
See, I guess I knew there was a girl he had started seeing, and whom he liked quite a bit, but using the "g" word? I tentatively said yes, and then asked if she will mind that we're playing video games. He replied, "Honestly, she probably will. Maybe we should have a back-up plan." I joked, "Wow, man, she's a non-gamer? I don't know if I can approve of this union." There was a pause from his end of the line, then a matter-of-fact "...Um, yeah you can."
The girl came over. And she was cool. And they sat on the couch together and were all leaning against each other and crap. And no video games were played! Our video game night, and none were touched! The outrage! The horror!
And what stunk the most, my friends? She's a cool chick. I mean, I don't have the hots for her, but we got along well. And for all I know, she's going to be around a while, which means she will dominate this guy's time and attention (as I suppose she should). And the status quo will change.
I don't like change.
So here's my confession, blog-world: If you tell me you've started dating someone, or it gets serious, or you get engaged, I'll try my very very best to be happy for you, and tell you that I am. But if for a split-second you see something in my eyes bitter and green-shaded, I ask you in advance to forgive me. Believe that I'm working on it.
But when it comes down to it, most of the time I'm a selfish cuss. And in your moment of joy, I can't help but think about myself. It's wrong, and I'm sorry. But it's there.