Making Excuses

I said last Thursday that I can’t abide excuses. The thing is, I classified it all as an excuse. I decided that there would never, could never, be any reason for any person, most of all, myself, to not be in absolute and utter control of their every response and reaction.

That’s a pretty shitty worldview when I put it that way.

But I didn’t realize the harm I was doing myself until I read SocialJerk’s post, since deleted, or I’d link to it for you. Here is the part that got me:

We label and pathologize behaviors that are so understandable. Grief? Fuck grief, get it together! (Or so says my obscenity ladened parody version of DSM-V. Look for it in bookstores this fall!) It’s not to say that not going to school, or running away, or fighting, are ok and we should let it go on. They’re not, and we shouldn’t. People need to be getting help and working through these things.

I can’t tell you how many times I’ve told someone ‘it’s okay.’ In person, or via text, email, comment, what have you. It’s okay for everyone else in the entire world to be sick or sad–everyone but me.

I won’t cut myself any slack. No matter how many times I prove myself wrong, I still believe that I should be able to power through it, whatever ‘it’ may be. But I’m not. I’m not okay, it’s not okay, and I’m taking offense at the wrong excuses.

I’m making excuses to not take care of myself. I’m making excuses to not acknowledge how I feel. And then I thought about this:

There’s often a lot of talk about taking a no-nonsense approach, and not letting a child “make excuses” for their behavior. That’s fine if we’re talking about a spoiled kid whose led a charmed life and has decided she doesn’t want to go to school.

If I were on the outside, seeing someone else struggle with my life, would I expect them to be the happy, well-adjusted, perfect person?

Fuck no. Not ever.

But that is precisely what I expect from myself.

I probably shouldn’t do that.

I make excuses to not do things that would make me a happier, more well-adjusted person. I don’t say these excuses out loud, but the choices I make are mostly based on fear. I want to say unfounded fear, but, heh, you know. I fear what might happen if I don’t make myself constantly available for my family. I fear taking time for myself to write or read or anything. I fear screwing up.

I know I act crazy (my choice of words), but it’s hard for me to know I act crazy. Does that make sense? 

It’s hard to even talk about this, because it feels like one big excuse. 

But even if it is just one big excuse, that’s okay. 

That’s okay.

It’s okay.

8 Comments on “Making Excuses”

  1. SM says:

    Anna over at Supposed to Be My Symphony wrote about this a while ago. We’re so quick to let others off the hook but not ourselves. I’m so hard on myself. I don’t need to be but I am. “It’s okay” is a good mantra for my life.

    You are a wonderful person, April. You’ve been through some tough shit but you are someone that I admire immensely. Your strength astounds me. Sending love your way today.

  2. I agree with SM….& you’re definitely a wonderful person! 🙂 Many big hugs…

  3. 최다해 gongjumonica says:

    Oh, April. Hugs! I feel for you here, and I say I sometimes experience the same thing 😦

  4. jjiraffe says:

    Oh, I hear you on this. We are such a bootstrapping, accountable society that admitting there is something wrong or that there is a reason we behave some way is not really acceptable sometimes and especially not to ourselves.

    I echo what the others have said and I also have a tendency to make choices based on fear, not passion or what I want. That’s why Project Dreamcatcher was such a scary step forward. But a liberating one.


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