Does anyone else get the feeling that they are always apologizing?
Apologizing for your appearance, or your schedule. Apologizing to friends because your personal life has been a priority? apologizing to your neighbors because you let the weeds in your beds get out of control? Apologizing to the car next to you, because your breaks are obnoxiously loud (Yes… I did this today…. yes, I need to get them fixed)
I find that I apologize far to much, over things I’m not sorry for, as if, it helps people resent me less. It’s not even that I say “I’m sorry” all the time, but I notice, I try and put a negative tone to things, to not make them sound so great.
For instance, my husband and I went to Europe this past June. It was amazing how little support we got for it (not that we needed support). People at work asked if i was going anywhere during my two weeks off and I would say “Just visiting family”, and it was so much better received then “Going to Germany to see my dad, and then to the south of France for a weekend for my cousins wedding”.
People hate happy people. No one remembers that I couldn’t have kids, so rather that sit around and play out the life of 3 children in my head on the weekends, I’m taking my life by the horns and riding it!
His sister in law is disgusted with us. I booked a secret cruise to the Bahamas over Memorial Day, I didn’t tell the husband about it, until the last minute. you should have seen the excitement on his face. We live apart, so when we get the change to spend 4 solid days of romance and tropical weather — we take it. Why should I feel apologetic for it? His sister in law truly asked “So…what’s the deal with all these trips?” as if i was supposed to have a reason to spend time with my husband. When opportunities come up, we take them….because we don’t have kids, and we have vacation time built up. Reason enough for me!
I’ve had a lot happen in my life. Some great things, and some not so wonderful. I’ve been given a lot of great opportunities, and i know that i am lucky for them. I also know, that i am open minded and flexible, therefore, more ‘opportunities’ come to me.
My mom died 6 days before Christmas when I was 14 years old. 5 months later my dad was relocated to Germany. He didn’t (nor did we) have much use for Christmas any more, so to avoid the holiday all together, my dad would take us skiing 2 hours south of where we lived. The resort happen to be in the Austrian Alps, so when people learn that I’ve “skied the Alps” their perception of me turns into something far from the truth, and not so flattering. “spoiled”
I recently told one of the ladies at my office, that I was offered a volunteer position at one of the Chicago Museums — and i was SUPER excited, because i don’t have kids, and i get to work with the scouts and school kids doing science experiments! as soon as I told her, she honestly asked, “Does your family come from money?”. What in the hell is that suppose to even mean?! so i replied, “I’m sorry?” , “Money… does your family come from it? You just sound like you had a very rich childhood”. I responded, “Lynn… we are talking about volunteering on Saturdays….what in the Hell does that have to do with money?”, “well it just sounds to me, that you do all these crazy things, you just got back from Europe, and when you talk, you just seem so cultured and educated”. I’m sorry? should I apologize for coming off as a well rounded, educated and cultured 28 year old? Should I explain that I was forced to move abroad ( thought it was pretty fuckin’ sweet!) and I’m super nerdy, and that my parents weren’t wealthy, especially after 2 years of Chemotherapy and a funeral?
I’m just tired of being sorry. We told his parents that we were going to plan to go back to Europe in April, and they were less than pleased. They didn’t understand why we needed to go back, a year after we were just there. Maybe i should have rephrased, “We are going to go visit my dad in April, a year after i saw him last”. Makes a difference right? But why do I need to? Why do i need to explain every choice I make, as if to help lessen the resentment I get form others.
I’m not apologizing unless I truly mean it. I want to enjoy the time i have with my Family, my husband, my dad, and this life! I’m going to take those lemons life gave me dammit, and I’m going to make the best damn lemonade!
Here is a list of things I’ve been chastised for, where I felt the need to apologize when really… I wasn’t sorry at all!
I’m not sorry for:
- Being in a ridiculously happy marriage
- Not going through invasive infertility treatments
- Owning Pit bulls
- Not wearing makeup
- missing workouts
- not being a Christian
- for loving Science and Archaeology
- being a “tree-hugger” and recycling
- trying to be mostly vegetarian, but enjoying the occasional hamburger with pickles
- living in Chicago — although I love the country — this is a great city!!!
- being educated and bilingual
- financially conservative and socially liberal
- my brakes squealing (actually no, they were obnoxiously loud, and I really was sorry for the painful sound!)
I love my life. We all make choices, and i am making a choice to live happily. I’m not just reading an inspirational quote about life, but I’m choosing to live my life like the inspirational quotes I read. I’m not going to apologize for not forcing myself to seek infertility treatments. I’m not going to apologize for booking secret romantic getaways whenever the opportunity (and cheap group-on Deals) arise.
Why do we feel the need to?