Thursday, June 14, 2012

Kvetching in the Kitchen

Impromptu therapy sessions are the best.

One minute you're heating up your Lean Cuisine in the microwave, the next you're blurting all sorts of shit you had no intention on sharing. And this all takes place in the kitchen. At work.

Some people were blessed with the gene of under-sharing. Not me. You may find this hard to believe (and it sort of negates my previous sentence), but I am shy. Really. I wouldn't go so far as to call myself meek or even bashful, but I would say that I'm more of an observer.

That is, until I:
1. Drink
2. Feel totally comfortable with you
3. Feel uncharacteristically confident
4. Am on a rant

Then, you'll have a hard time shutting me up. And, Oh, will I share. The first time you experience it, you'll be surprised. You'll probably be annoyed. You may wonder if I suffer from dissociative identity disorder (I don't. Honest.). But in the end, I like to think that you'll find it simultaneously enlightening and entertaining (that's the writer in me).

I digress.

 Back to today's impromptu therapy session. While heating up my low-cal lunch I mentioned to a few empathetic co-workers how tired I was feeling. My tirade grew from there.

Tired from trying to make everyone else happy--my husband (so he feels loved, needed, and won't seek attention elsewhere), my kids (so they feel loved, secure, and won't whine), my friends (so they feel loved, won't judge, and will listen to my whining), etc., etc. There's a pattern here. The fact is, when I know others are happy, it makes me feel happy. Or does it?

It doesn't take a psychological professional to see the issue here, right?

One of my co-workers, who seemed to understand where I was coming from, asked, "But are you happy?"

I hemmed and hawed, and answered, "Mostly. I don't know. Not really."

"Why?" she pressed.

"Because my expectations in others are too high. They are unrealistic. I suppose I just constantly set myself up for disappointment"


Ahhh, grasshopper.

Lesson learned from today's kvetching in the kitchen...lower expectations, be realistic. Just be. Happiness. Happens.


  1. All I can say is that I get this. I so completely get this.

  2. I actually also got that advice from Anne Lamott (who got it from a friend): Lower the bar of expectation! easier said than done, right?!