Josie, Mediator for Life
It has recently come to my attention that I treat every serious conversation like an intervention.
I’m not sure if I’m ok with this.
You ask me for advice on how to talk to someone about your feelings or your goals or hopes, and I’m most likely to tell you to sit the person down, keep sharp objects away, and reiterate before and after every sentance that you love them no matter what.
“It helps if you have others tell them the same thing, maybe even sitting in the same room,” I’ll clarify.
“I should have others come with me and also propose to my fiance?” my friend asks, confused.
I nod. “Also, hide the alcohol.”
It bothers me that looking back on every truly serious or important event in my life, I can see this pattern emerging. Go in, tell them you love them, break the news, then pat a hand and run from the consequences like hell has been my motto for confrontation of any kind.
“I just want you to know that I love you no matter what, and you’re a fine person. Grandma’s dead. ADIOS!” was how I broke the news to my brother. “You’re a good person and a wonderful human being. Your band sucks. SEE YA!” I hollered at a friend. “I think you are nice, and you always have good sweaters on. I quit OK BYE!” I shouted at my old boss, rounding the corner of the office.
This, for 22 years of my life, has been my system for interacting with other humans. This script, the wording changed slightly for different people at different times. Genuine depth of feeling baffles me in ways that it should not so, stumbling, I revert back to the worn but true method at hand.
But can you blame me? Who wouldn’t want a formula for life, a blanket equation for dealing with our peers? Isn’t that what every self-help book and guru, every soul searching vision quest, every look at yourself and others is about? Finding that golden balance you can stick with for the rest of your life–writing the script that defines who you are versus the outside world?
So if I ever take you by the shoulder, tell you you mean a lot, and then reveal I think you need to pay rent and run, don’t take offense. I’m just following my script for life.
Please do your part now, and fly into an inconsolable rage before cutting off ties to family and friends you suspect are in cahoots with me. It’s the only civillized thing to do.