No matter what has happened, no matter how many times I've felt hurt, wronged or misled (intentionally or not) I've made it my aim to not become another "bitter" sister. Regardless of the circumstances, I keep a stiff upper lip and roll with the punches. It makes no sense to give the other party the satisfaction of seeing you sweat. Every once in a while, I feel that this quality means NOTHING and gets you NOWHERE.
For example, there was a guy I was seeing from time to time. For some reason, the dating gods thought it would be funny to have me meet another individual of the female persuasion that he was dating at dinner. I had no idea that this person was dating this guy, and even further, I had NO idea that he would be interested in someone like her. I'm by no means a priss or a shrinking violet, however, this "lady" was vile beyond all definition. Besides the fact that she used "fuck" - at the dinner table with a four and five year old - as punctuation, but grooming wasn't her strong point either. Evidently, closing her mouth while chewing also didn't rank high on her list of priorities. Let me say that I'm all about being relaxed and letting it all hang loose, so for her to disgust me means that she was all but taking a dump on the table. In any event, I happened to whisper the name of the guy I was seeing to my cousin in a fairly harmless context. The lady happened to hear it and almost immediately lost all composure. Now, mind you, I was merely seeing this man on occasion and had no delusions of the situation actually "being" anything. However, this poor lady did not have that same perspective. The remaining 15 minutes of dinner were tense and embarrassing but I never lost it. Nor did I disclose the nature of my "relationship" with this guy. My not losing it however, does not mean that shit didn't cut me to the heart. Knowing that you're not the only one someone is seeing and "KNOWING" that you're not the only one that someone is seeing are two totally different ball games.
The thing that bothered me the most was that, I'd let this dude "in". I experienced a comfort zone with him and was even able to let him know that I was scared of the situation and why I felt I should keep him at arms length. Then just when I felt relaxed about everything, that shit happened. Then, I'll be damned if the situation wasn't made to be my fault. I can't say that DIDN'T hurt, but that wasn't the big thing. The biggest thing was, my life was totally in order before him and he knew that. Why did he interfere with my universe when he knew he couldn't add to it?
My "favorite" though, still rings in my mind. All I can remember is that it was a day in July, 2000. I'd just recently gotten back with my husband and found out I was pregnant with our daughter. We were going out to celebrate our reunion and our new place and it was a pretty nice evening. We went to dinner then went to shoot pool. After a while, I got a little bored at the pool hall and left to do some shopping and pick up my son. When I got back, there was a bevy of large women outside of the pool hall with a baby. After chuckling to myself at the "baby mama drama" appearance of it all, I blew the horn for my husband to come out. It was raining, and there was no way I was leaving my young son in the car by himself in front of a pool hall. Imagine my surprise a short time later when I start hearing the ring leader of the "baby mama drama" crew saying that someone who shared the same name as my husband hadn't seen his son since he was born. Imagine my further surprise when she said that this man also had a "baby mama" with the same name as mine who he was leaving. Ain't that some shit. Once my punk ass (now ex) husband finally did come out of the pool hall, he had a brief exchange with mama drama and hurried into the car and told me to leave. Again, even with him, I never lost my cool, because I think that's just silly. Plus, I had my unborn child to think about and I was determined to have a peaceful pregnancy. He of course denied everything, but over time, I came to realize that he had, in fact, fathered this child. I, however, was not going to be stressed, and after I took every ounce of leave that I had from the bank (and some that I didn't) I ultimately left him.
I suppose I could say that I have the satisfaction of knowing that I stayed cool under fire, but the fact remains, both those situations broke my heart. In both situations, I stood strong, but ultimately alone. Though the situations were different, I thought that both persons had a measure of concern and respect for me, and it became evident that they didn't. However, it's incumbent upon me to not take their sins of thoughtlessness out on the next man, and I usually handle that with ease. Occasionally though, there are days like this, days that are icy and lonely, that makes that task seem just a little more formidable than usual.