Friday, August 1, 2014

Guilty as Charged

They say you can’t go home. I don’t know who they are or why that phrase stuck, because I’m pretty sure it’s horse shit. In fact, I went home just last week. You periodically have to go home from time to time. If you don't your mom gets angry at you. If you live somewhere you weren’t born chances that not only can you go home, but a good chunk of your vacation time will be spent going home. It seems that's where a good portion of the weddings I'm invited to are located. At home. I'm from Michigan that's where the home I'm not supposed to be able to got back, but I went back home to Michigan just last week for a wedding. So there.

I was only home for a few days. One of the days was spent going to a wedding. I did get to see my parents. My wife and I stayed at my in-laws. So I got to see both my parents in-law (or parent in-laws, I guess it could also be in-law parents) and my cats in-law. I didn’t make a lot of plans because I knew we weren't going to be there that long, and some of the ones I did make I didn’t get a chance to do. I wanted to see some friends, but with the wedding, our folks, and the cats time just ran too short.
Me and the cats in-law (I'm the one in the hat)

I handled this like I generally do, by feeling guilty about it. I don’t have have any numbers to back this up, but I’m pretty sure that I experience guilt a full 735% more than the average person. I don’t know when it started really or why, but I’ve always been pretty prone to feeling a lot of guilt. I vividly remember and still feel guilty about the day in 7th grade when I took the last piece of chicken even though my dad wanted it. 

The image the Wikipedia page uses for guilt

What I’m saying is that I’m a guilty guy. I don’t like that way. Sometimes I do something shitty and I don’t feel guilty. Then I think about it and start feeling guilty for my lack of guilt. 

I’ve always associated feeling guilty with a lack of self-confidence. I will admit that’s something I’ve also had trouble with through the years. Don’t worry though, you can bet your ass that I feel guilty as hell about my lack of self-confidence. So, I’m on it. This past weekend I realized that it’s the polar opposite. Only self-involved sacks of shit run around feeling guilty all the time. 

I didn’t get to see all the people I wanted to see. I got to see some of my family, but I didn’t get to see them enough. So I felt guilty. That might be the most narcissistic thing way to feel in that situation. You feel guilty when you’ve wronged someone. I didn’t wrong anyone. I just did not see them. My brain interprets not hanging out with people as wronging them. That’s it, their week must have just been ruined because I wasn’t in it. I’m like a child who assumes people just disappear when I’m not there and it eats me up. 

I’m pretty sure my parents like me okay, but who knows. Maybe they don’t. Me moving across the country might have been the best day of their lives. They might have one of those big days without accident signs, but instead it celebrates all the days I’m not there. I don’t know. They've always been supportive of me following my dreams. Maybe they were doing that in the hopes that I'd follow my dreams far away from them. My friends seem to be getting along pretty good without me, and I imagine they’ll continue to do so. Hell, for all I know all the dire economic news coming out of Michigan might be a cover to make sure I don’t come back anytime soon (add delusions of grandeur and paranoia to lack of self-confidence and crippling guilt). Who in their right mind wants to hang out with some weird guilty guy who keeps on apologizing for eating a piece of chicken nineteen years ago anyhow. 

My parents four years ago. They're smiling because I'm about to move away

So, to my family and friends who I didn’t get to see last week or didn’t see enough of, YOU’RE WELCOME!

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