To be or not to be a Queen B

To put it mildly, I’ve been rather cranky lately. Most of August, and all of September. A quick tour of my blog posts from the past two months will confirm this.

Chatting to one of my girlfriends I tried to put into words my concern that I’m turning into a bitch, a girl who has stopped caring about others’ feelings and just goes through life filled with anger and negative energy. To prove my point, I exclaimed without any trace of irony, “I mean… I wear black on purpose, now!”

She suggested that maybe Vanilla has a long ways before reaching true Queen B levels of bitchy? Maybe I was still at the Vanilla B levels of bitchy?

Bah. Maybe.

I’ve developed an assertive efficiency that borders on unpleasantness at work – I’ve significantly decreased the amount of time I spend massaging people’s feelings. I am a manager: I explain what I need and why, offer the opportunity to brainstorm on the best/most convenient approach for everybody involved, and then I expect it done. To the extent it doesn’t get done… Well. I’m not in the mood to make friends in the workplace. I swear a lot at work. I know I am getting thisclose to being a drain on people’s energy. Part of my says, “not my problem. If ppl just did their jobs, I wouldn’t be so frustrated.” Logical, true. But I recall a version of myself that was capable of taking a deep breath, assuming positive intent, and bringing a smile to my coworkers face. The memory of that Vanilla feels very distant.

Since writing I’m going on a peniscation and unfollowing Beaut on social media, I’ve felt better: it is always a relief when secrets are out in the open – shame can’t survive in daylight. However, Beaut and I got into a huge fight on Monday. HUGE. I sent him the “peniscation” post and told him that I refused further communication with him until he’d read it from beginning to end – he owed me that much. So far, he hasn’t read it. Can’t say I am too surprised. Resigned at having more proof that my purpose in his life was to be convenient and amusing.

Yesterday was kizomba class. He was there. It was the first time seeing him since our fight and my friendship-ending ultimatum. I was worried – would I be able to handle it? My cousins believe that I need to change dance schools STAT. I refuse to. I have found a school where the teacher, price, schedule, students, location all suit me perfectly. Leaving because of Beaut’s presence would just be handing him one more victory over me. FUCK THAT.

Anyhow, surprisingly, it went just fine. I concentrated on the steps, listened to teacher, smiled at all my partners and enjoyed dance class. When it was Beaut’s turn, we danced without a hitch. He asked me if we were cool, now? Vanilla B gave him an amused smile. “No.” And turned to greet my next partner, dismissing him.

DD claims that I am a prodigy. She is the world acclaimed professor of the highly coveted topic “Lessons in Contempt and Ignoring Nuisances 101”

  • Lesson 1: Don’t look at them. Look past them.
  • Lesson 2: They don’t exist, therefore you no longer see them at all.
  • Lesson 3: Reduce their voice to annoying background noise – no intelligible words therefore nothing you need to respond to.

Intuitively, I did all three, and it didn’t cost me that much to do so. Part of me is relieved, because another 1-2 weeks of this and the contempt I feel will fade into indifference, meaning that I’ll be completely at ease sharing the same oxygen as him at dance school. Part of me is completely freaked out because only a Queen B is comfortable denying others’ existence, and reducing them to invisibility.

Every day I struggle with the temptation of forwarding the “peniscation” post to Main Girl, and watching their interaction implode. I’m ashamed of my glee at the possibility of tripping him up, and my complete unconcern with using Main Girl as road kill to achieve my means. Yet, like Queen B herself, I am enjoying finally acknowledging my hurt pride, and anger. It is empowering to be able to say, “Yes. I am angry as fuck. I will not be ashamed of how I feel.” Or as B puts it, “What’s worse, lookin’ jealous or crazy? Jealous or crazy? Or like being walked all over lately, walked all over lately, I’d rather be crazy.”

Pity that my anger won’t produce a multi-million record deal and artistic recognition. #lemonadeismyfavoritealbumof2016

This morning, I was taking public transportation, irritated with the world, brushing past ppl with sighs of annoyance, careless of whether or not I jostled them. Then I noticed a young girl, with some sort of palsy and mental health troubles, standing at the bottom of the stairs, looking fearfully up the loooooooooooooooong flight of stairs. With dismay, as countless people pushed past her, causing her to struggle with her balance, she looked at the out-of-order escalator next to the stair case.

I was late for work. I had already received about 25 emails, 5 of which had REALLY irritated me, and 1 of which was from the CFO impatient for one of my analyses. I would have been one out of dozens of people that ignored that girl.

I stopped. I asked her if she would like me to walk up the stairs with her. She stuttered a shy, anxious yes. It took us 5 minutes, when it would have taken me less than 45 seconds.

Not a Vanilla B. I’d forgotten how that felt.


I fail at feeling sorry for myself

I’m feeling slightly raw from my non-breakup with my non-boyfriend. Reasonable. It is sad.

Today, Eminem is not helping. I drifted to one of my other favorite bands, Walk Off The Earth. Listening to their playlist on loop. Not noticing that I was hitting repeat on one song in particular:

And even as I gloried in all the hyperbolic feels, letting the lyrics move me, bringing a tear or two to my eye, part of my brain was mildly concerned that this was a symptom of psychosis.

Is this a bad thing? Am I really that immature? Can I even listen to this song if I am not wearing any tighty whities? At least we have the same hair. WHAT IF THIS IS CAUSED BY ALL THE BLEACH IN MY HAIR? I must have brain damage.

Except I really like this song. Nah, Imma own my feelings. This is beauty. Art transcends Miley Cyrus. OMG I just associated art with Miley Cyrus. OMG I just said OMG. I AM BECOMING HER. Which, I suppose, isn’t that bad if it means I get to bang Liam Hemsworth… I was planning on becoming a nun and/or a cat-lady and avoiding men for the rest of my life, but I suppose I can make an exception for him…

HOW CAN I SAVE MYSELF? I need an intervention from this meltdown!!!

And before I know it, I’m watching Anne Hathaway and giggling hysterically.

I clearly don’t understand how to properly do a bruised heart.

During the past few weeks as I realized where we were headed, I listened frequently to these two songs:

In both cases, I could fancy that the lyrics had been written by Beaut & my own common sense admonishing me to accept that ours was not destined to be a happy outcome.

Today I listened to them again, regretfully. But such is the power of music, that I was comforted by the reminder that I am clearly not the first to live through this kind of disappointment, nor will I be the last. These songs are testament to good things coming out of what ought to be a sad scenario.

Can’t exactly see what good things will come out of my own situation, but I’ll stay open-minded. Afterall, Liam Hemsworth is on the line.

That time I realized I was going to be ok

As mentioned in yesterday’s post, I’ve been coming to terms with certain limitations in the scope of my relationship with Beaut, which made me sad. We are most definitely never getting married, and living happily ever after. Le boooo. (Side note: I imagine him reading that sentence and freaking the fuck out, and it makes me giggle. I am not always a nice person.)

I wallowed in my sadness for a few days. To the point where I was fighting a losing battle with my paranoid brain, so I booked an emergency appointment with my therapist. The last thing I wanted was to slide into another depression because of a boy. Been there, done that: ain’t fun and totally pointless.

During my appointment with my therapist, we talked things through, and he helped me come to term with my emotions and accept the limitations imposed by Beaut. I knew I was sad – that was the reason for my appointment, afterall, but I was taken aback by a sudden burst of honest emotion:

But the sex! What if I never have good sex again? I only just started having sex again, and it is awesome, and I’d forgotten how much I like it, and now I have to give it up? And risk never getting as good sex again? This SUCKS. I don’t want to! I don’t want to have to start dating again, and risk lots of disappointing, awkward, lame sexual encounters. It took me so much time and effort to be vulnerable with this chump, I got rewarded with good sex and now I have to start over? THIS IS STUPID.

That was the first clue that I was going to be ok. If my biggest concern was about the quality of my future sex, clearly, I wasn’t overly devastated by stunted turn of events with Beaut.

As the appointment progressed, I felt comfortable enough to mourn the end of some of the hopes I had cherished about Beaut. I cried elegantly – the kind of pretty crying Hollywood stars do when listening to a moving acceptance speech at the Oscars: a single tear or two, gently trickling down my cheeks. Which is when I noticed my therapist, sitting in front of me, full of pent up gleeful energy. I asked him why he was so hyper.

Hyper? I’m happy! Remember when you first walked in here, 19 months ago? You were in a full blow depression, spurred on by how 2 guys had badly treated you: you were barely sleeping with one, when you found out he had a surprise girlfriend, and the other one was a dude with whom you had attempted some emotional vulnerability, and he shut it down before you’d even made it to a date, and then he said some mean things to you. Neither one of those guys did you actually care about, yet, their actions were enough to push you over the edge into depression. Now, here, today, you are faced with a situation where you can legitimately be sad: it sucks when someone you care about, and have been involved with for months, does not reciprocate the same feelings. Totally normal that you are sad, but look how great you are handling it! You aren’t depressed, you are nowhere near being depressed. I’m so happy this happened: it is proof of how far you have come along! This is great news!!!

In the silence that followed, I dryly suggested that maybe he could get a grip for the remaining 10 minutes of the appointment, and do his happy dance about the end of my Beaut saga on his own, when I wasn’t crying in his face. Sheepishly, he agreed. 2 minutes later, I caught him hiding a grin.

So there you go. Apparently, I am going to be ok. And that is a good thing.

I’m just never going to have satisfying sex ever again. So my paranoid brain tells me.


Where I rediscover that Mimi is fidèle

For some excellent reasons, things between me and Beaut have reached a bit of a hiccup. My understanding and acceptance of these reasons does not diminish my disappointment. But, such is life, and I’ll just have to suck it up, drop 10lbs, look and feel fabulous and continue blogging my trainwreck life story.

At the start of this Beaut saga, I’d carefully and kindly placed my three teddybears in my closet because it felt weird to have them on my bed when Beaut came over, and because I thought it was time to turn a chapter from girlhood to womanhood. Real women don’t sleep with teddybears, so I’ve been told. For the past few months, every time I opened my closet door, my favorite teddybear, Mimi Nafiss (yes, he has a first and last name, teddybears deserve the same privilege as humans, don’t you think?), who has been in my life since I was christened at 38 days old, would look at me from his perch on the shelf with reproachful eyes. He didn’t say anything, but he gave me that look, the look of “I see you as you really are, and you are disappointing me, and hurting my feelings. Your priorities suck.” I would quickly close the closet door, to avoid his sad eyes. I told myself: I am 31 years old. I can do this. I can not talk to my teddybears in my head. I can go through life without a daily snuggle with my teddybears. I am a grown-ass woman.

The first thing I did upon acknowledging the Beaut hiccup was drink a bottle of wine. Not true, but that sounds dramatic and typically female. What I actually did when I accepted the hiccup was to go to my closet and pull out my teddybears -the next best thing to calling up my mommy and being told soothing, reassuring lovely thoughts. My teddybears immediately brought me back to my more serene place, one where as a child I felt loved and safe.

Growing up as an only child, Mimi was my best friend. I gave him a voice and a personality, he was my partner in crime. He was my son, and his father had been my mother’s childhood teddybear, who’d died a tragic death in a dumpster. My mother would invent fantastic adventures for Mimi, impersonating his voice. She sent me report cards written by his teachers at school, emphasizing his behavioral problems: apparently, he once attempted to avoid eating his broccoli at lunch time, by hiding it in a glassful of milk. At supper time, he would ask to have some dessert too, since he was part of the family, which I would helpfully eat for him. By the time I was a teenager, my mother and I had become addicted to Mimi, and would continue embroidering his story. My family thought we were weird. We were.

As I snuggled with Mimi and his two teddybrothers, feeling blue and down, Mimi whispered, “See? That is what you get when you seek anything less than the unconditional love of a teddyson.” My negative paranoid brain (for a full introduction to this charming side of my personality, read this post) smirked at me, “Loser! Here you are, you couldn’t even get this Beaut thing off the ground, and now you are back to talking to your teddybears?! And you think you are ready to date. Right. As if any guy, who knew how crazy you actually are, would stick around. Keep talking to your teddybears, woman. That’s right. Pathetic.” I was too sad to try deal with my paranoid brain – I couldn’t exactly find any counterarguments as to how talking to my teddybears would make me attractive dating material. Which is when Mimi reared up his teddybear head, and looked at me with his indignant teddybear eyes: “Hey! You listen to me, you. Mimi is fidèle. Vanilla-mama needs to learn to never settle for anything less than a guy who comforts her as much as Mimi does. Mimi has stuck with Vanilla-mama from the beginning, and has seen everything she has lived, and Mimi knows she will be ok. Mimi is here when she is sad. Beaut isn’t. The previous boy neither. The one before that neither. If those boys can’t even match up to a teddybear, they aren’t really worth worrying about, no? Shut up, paranoid brain. Mimi is enjoying these cuddles, so leave us alone.”

Surprisingly, my paranoid brain did leave us alone.