I am kinda a mean girl. No, not with perfect hair or a size 2 body or the prime boyfriend/girlfriend/husband and perfect house and carefully groomed child.
Nope. Those sins of pride are not mine.
But I have others.
I get jealous and resentful that people I knew at the beginning of their blog days seem to have bigger and more successful blogs. Because it isn't the strength of their intellect or writing ability And it sure as hell isn't their sparkling personalities. Some of these people would have stepped on their dying grandmother to promote themselves - and did. They morphed into people I no longer speak to, or read because Meh. They sure as hell don't need me to feed into their cult of personality and I can say nothing nice, so I excuse myself from the room.
My sin is Envy. Frequently arrogance. Pride in my Intelligence.
It is the success that I want and I feel I deserve. The acclaim for being smart and witty and erudite.
My own cult of personality where people love me from afar....not too close, after all. I freak out when the crowd gets too close, when the real starts to edge into my pretend life online.
Also, I hold Grudges. Grudges that make Ju-On look passive and friendly.
Grudges that made one person at BlogHer look more than a little nervous to see me. In fact, she started sputtering about the "issue" as soon as I greeted her before fleeing into the night. She was right. I hadn't forgotten - nor had I entirely forgiven. Fuck, who am I kidding? There was no forgiveness. In my mind, she had chosen her side and was dead to me. I was simply attempting to appear harmless.
I forget that I never appear harmless.
At the base of all of this bluster and bravado is insecurity. Longing to be liked when I feel unlikeable. Longing to be asked when I retreat. I resist hardest when I want something most. If I know I am wrong, I will strike out at you harder.
I want to be the girl everyone wants to sit next to - but I don't want to have to WORK at it. And By that, I mean be Fake about it. I could work at it, but it wouldn't be real. That Dawn is charming, because I have used her on occasion, but she exhausts me. That facade cracks quickly.
When I become the mean girl, I do it from fear. From longing. From the 12 year old Dawn hyperventilating in her Humanities classroom because she just got passed a note where everyone in the class had written, in detail, why they hated her. I can still tell you who signed that note.
I do it because weakness was not an option in my life, despite being incredibly emotionally frail.
I do it because if I hurt, you must hurt too. And More. Hurt more than me.
After 40 years on this earth, I still haven't found a solution for this streak in me. The best I can do is to root down to the core feelings and honestly name them. My hope is that in time, being exposed to the light, those wounds will dry and scab over. It doesn't always work, but I find that it is better than dressing those feelings up in indignation and self righteousness.