Friday, August 31, 2007

In Which I Reach Out, Get Nothing, and Pull Back I threw away a telephone number the other day. I had a friend who, although she was a Christian, asked me to stop emailing and calling her with prayer requests. This was partially my fault because, when I would ask her to pray, she would send me links to some pastor's website, some Christian teacher's preaching, and I told her that rather than send me links it would mean more to me if she would pray for me herself. I guess that was too much or her prayers were conditioned on my following this pastor's teachings. I don't know. In any event, her husband and Rob are still in touch occasionally and recently the husband called Rob so that we could all hang out. This was the second time since I had come down with the vertigo and when Rob once again said, "We can't because Satia is sick" it suddenly clicked that maybe, just maybe, there was seriously something wrong with me. My friend called me. She left a message. I didn't get it for a while because I didn't recognize the number and forgot to check my messages. Eventually someone else called, a number I recognized, they left a message and that is when I got her call. I immediately called her back, left a voice message and nothing. No call back. I guess my saying, "Yeah, I know you heard I've been sick for a couple of weeks or months or something but it's actually been about eight months. So how have you been?" wasn't the right message to leave. Perhaps I should have read to her from the Bible or something if I wanted her to call me back again. I don't know. I obviously didn't handle it right yet again. Still, I held onto her number for a few weeks and then threw it away. Today I am doing the same thing with another friend who has been saying for years that we should get together to talk about our writing, perhaps offer one another support and encouragement. At first, it was not a problem that we never could align our schedules according to our mutual desires. We definitely were at opposite sides of things with her being free whenever I was busy and vice versa. But she was laid off from her job and then I got hit with this vertigo and we both of us had days in which we were free. Her daughter would be at school and why couldn't we get together now that we were both more free than ever before? That was back in April . . . let's wait until after Mother's Day. Then there was a problem with the power where she lived and when she came back (temporarily living with her older daughter) she would contact me. Or not, as it turned out. I finally emailed and said, "Look, if you want to get together the ball is in your court. Call me. You have my number." And I received an enthusiastic, "I'll contact you after August 13" . . . tick tick tick. Time's up. The thing is, I am frustrated with my lack of independence. I can't just run off to do what I want, when I want, or even bemoan the fact that I can't do one thing because I have other commitments already in place. One would think that I would not toss away these "relationships" so casually when my life is so seemingly empty of social engagements. But today, when I was writing about this article in my other blog, I realized that it ends with a very critical (for me) insight.
Feedback Writing within a group gives you the opportunity to air your work and gain feedback. Join a creative writing class or set up a writing group with friends, taking turns to suggest exercises. Seek out feedback that helps you to develop your creativity and find your own voice.
When the vertigo first hit, I couldn't watch television or read. Eventually I got to where I could do both but then I worked my way to reading. It can still make me dizzy over time but I could read. Then I began to write. Finally. I even wrote a short story. Only my mother and my step-sister have read it. Even Rob didn't take or make the time to read it. Whatever. The thing is, I want something in my life. I know specifically what it is. And in order to have this I need to get rid of dead weight, people who say they care but their actions say something else. I am making room for these new people . . . getting rid of the pseudo-friendships . . . enough. I deserve better than this and I am tired of settling for less just because I am not my independent self. Hell! All the more reason I shouldn't settle for less!!!

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