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8:23 p.m. - 2012-02-07
what do you see in me.
For a while, in my old diary (I think I deleted the entries), I was agonizing over what I bring to the table in my friendship with S, who is one of the people I care about most in the world and who is also old enough to be my mom. I suppose this is mostly because Matt made me feel like I have nothing to offer anybody, and anybody who pretends to be my friend does so out of pity, or because I am emotionally blackmailing them. It's easy to make me believe something like that, since I have very little self-esteem or self-confidence, and easier still for him because he is my husband, and he used to be my best friend, and I used to love and trust him more than anyone on earth.

For a while I cut myself off from everyone, and then when I finally came out of hiding and asked S. and my friend Brian to forgive me (and they did) I still felt very insecure and unsure why anyone would forgive me and want me as a friend. Brian is a little easier for me to understand, because I was his friend when he weighed 400 pounds and didn't really have any friends, and he claims that's partly why he was finally able to come out of hiding and lose more than 200 pounds -- so I know I contribute something to his life.

S is harder, though; she has lots of friends and family and people in general; her life would be quite full without me. She has been a wonderful friend to me and stuck with me through thick and thin, but why? I know why I want and need her as a friend, but what does she see in me?

The point of this entry is that I guess I figured that out when I was talking to her last night on the phone. Not that that's what we were talking about... It's just that I think I finally managed to get Matt's voice in my head to shut the fuck up, so I could hear my own voice and S's.

I realized that I make her laugh. Like burst-out-laughing -- guffaw -- kind of laughing. One of the things I had been telling myself (Matt telling me?) is that I'm depressing. But I am NOT depressing. I crack people up; I have this devious mind that sees humor in just about anything. So I make S. laugh, a lot. And I listen, and I understand a lot of things that are part of who she is, like Vermont and her farm and news reporting and loving animals. And there are areas where we're different but complementary -- I have kids; she wishes she did and adores mine; I'm studying my butt off to get out of reporting and start a new career (that involves being multi-lingual!) and she wishes she could figure out how to get out of news and do "something else."

So maybe I'm not all that pathetic and depressing ... maybe I do bring something to the table after all.

Realizing that makes me super-happy, because every time I've seen S since I came out of hermithood I have been so HAPPY, happy that she's my friend and I'm alive and we're there washing windows or whatever ... but then that feeling is tempered with doubt: she means the world to me but what am I to her? What if I'm nothing, too young and too screwed up to even be a real friend?

But now, lightbulb turned on, mystery solved, I'll be able to enjoy the time I spent with her without reservations and doubt and second-guessing.

Where did my self-esteem go? Really it wasn't Matt; when he thought I was a great person I felt like a valuable person and when he changed his mind I changed mine; I needed someone else to validate me because I felt worthless until proven otherwise. And where did that start? With my parents, of course -- yada yada. But even though I tell myself trillions of times in my head that who my dad told me I am is wrong, I still feel worthless and undesirable and considerably less of a person than most other people on the planet. I feel like no matter what I do, even if I were to mold my personality into what would be an ideal person who has value, I'd still be worthless. Does this make any sense? It's like a stain or a birthmark you can't wash off -- that's what the shame of being me is like



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