Overcoming Resentment

I realized the other day that I resent the strangest people.

I resent pregnant people I don’t know. I am a total pregnant woman judger. I make snap judgements on what kind of relationship she may have with her spouse – or if her spouse is present, I make a little more informed judgement.

I resent crap parents. People who are ignoring their little kids in the grocery store, people who aren’t holding their little ones’ hands as they cross the street.

I saw a TV show today starring a mom with her two 20-something pygmy dwarf children and I resented her because she gets her kids. They are tiny and they are probably a lot of work, but they survived. They are filling her days with the things kids should fill a mother’s days with.

I even find myself resenting people my age who are just… alive. I caught myself thinking the other day as I looked at a few friends talking in a Starbucks: “You were a baby once and you don’t even know how much of a miracle it is that you made it.”

Friends of mine on Facebook who complain about their late night diaper changes, or revel in being “kid-free” for the night… I resent them.

Sorry friends. I know you don’t know you’re stabbing me in my guts with your unintentionally thoughtless posts.

Friends of mine who are pregnant?

I’m sorry. I know it makes me a crap person right now. But I resent you too, friends.

I want to be in your shoes. Blissfully knocked up, oblivious to loss, nothing but hope for the future.

I miss that Me. The one that was like you.

The innocence is gone.

My mom shared a story with me about when my grandpa lost his job. He said over and over as he coped with his sadness, “Just pray that I don’t get bitter.”

I don’t want to be bitter. I cried to my mom on the phone today: I don’t see myself as the type of person who will become angry and bitter, the type of person who resents a pregnant friend. I expect more of myself. I’m better than that.

But sometimes I need to be okay with being temporarily that person. Because otherwise I am going to jam that person down deep inside and let her fester until she’s so pissed off at being silenced that she takes over completely.

Brave, strong, “positive-spin” me can take center stage for most of the time, because that’s the me that I expect of myself and that’s the me that happens most naturally. But every once in a while I’m going to take a personal day (to protect my coworkers), cry until my eyes hurt, and internally (and sometimes externally) rally against the universe.

I think the only way to overcome resentment is to embrace it.

But just an awkward side hug.

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3 thoughts on “Overcoming Resentment

  1. Nicole says:

    You are the strongest woman I have ever met. Just that you can admit that you’re angry, at the world, at God, at your friends, at everyone about what happened makes you brave. It’s ok to be angry, but the great thing about you is that you’ve molded your anger into something amazing, something that will help so many people, and you just keep going.

  2. bluestmuse says:

    Ditto what Nicole said. It’s incredible to me that you can not only admit these feelings, but write about them so honestly. I think you’re right about overcoming resentment by embracing it. In doing so, I imagine that in time the resentment will be replaced with even greater understanding.

  3. […] than the average adult with death. And my mother commented to me on one of my particularly bad days, “It has always struck me how tenuously we cling to […]

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