It’s easy to talk about not caring what people think, but to actually do it… that takes more work. It’s even harder when you make up thoughts for people. As if it’s not bad enough dealing with the real thing. I assume what people are thinking (usually bad things) and proceed to get my feelings hurt by assumptions.
Sitting here, letting the worst manifest in my imagination, well… it comes down to failure. I am still looking for recognition and respect. I want to be liked by everyone, even people I don’t really like. I want the fantasy I created long ago, to be my mythological self where everyone was compelled to adore me in some way. I imagined this body and life was only a cover to hide me from evil.
Every once in a while, I still escape into my head. But it’s not always the imagined self. Sometimes it is the future self–one who is successful, one who can show them all. In that version, I want success for the wrong reason. It’s not for me. It is not a positive vision but vengeful and rotten. The motivation is poison.
It hurts less to fail if I fall back into fantasy. If I put my true desire behind the aspiration, it is the good part of me who is failing.
I once had a pen that said, “Those who do nothing don’t make mistakes.” But that only holds up at a shallow level, by ignoring far too many truths. Would I rather try and fail or do nothing and torture myself with what could have been and, most of all, knowing I am a coward? Doing nothing was killing me.
Exposing myself to failure has been nerve-wracking, but I am happier now. How long has it been since I wallowed in misery? At least as long as my writing streak.
So I’m happier. I’m working. Why do things still hurt? People do not like my page, and I hurt. Some may block my requests or ignore them or say no. I don’t know which, but I know it was one of those things. Some of those people I supported by attending their events or liking their efforts. I do those things because I believe people should help each other.
But I will not be used.
Those have done me a service by showing their true nature. They are not people with whom I want to associate. Nor whom I will support.
Even after figuring that out, there is a part of me that says if I had a better product, I would not have to rely on anyone’s kindness or favors. It gets murky when the product is partially me.
This may be a lesson on rejection, priming me for the long road to publication. It is harder because I have sheltered myself for so long, withdrawing from the world so judgment could not hurt me. But I will never learn to handle it by hiding and doing nothing. Doing nothing is a failure in itself.
As for the people who have already rejected me, that’s as bad as it gets. What else is there? They have made their statements. Some have revealed their characters. It is time to let go of my disappointment and carry on.