Sunday, April 10, 2011


I'm pretty practiced when it comes to disappointment. It's easy for me to forgive others for disappointing me, infinitely more hard to forgive myself for disappointing others.

I wouldn't consider myself a planner, but I get around that by putting things on my calendar, which I'm enslaved to at work. A few weeks ago, I committed myself to something yesterday afternoon but forgot to put it on my calendar. Needless to say, I didn't keep my commitment.. others were disappointed, but not as much as I was. I know I'm being extra hard on myself, but follow-through is something I value.

I've talked before about Myers-Briggs type and how it determines your actions (or inactions) and sometimes the motives behind them... well my type is a recipe for disaster when it comes to commitment. As a 'Feeler', my values are top priority (as anyone who has tried to tempt me into eating meat can tell you) and as an introvert, they are very personal as well. Any upset to the values, like breaking a promise, takes intensive repair and consideration before I'm okay with it.

As it turns out, yesterday was a day for multiple disappointments... to myself and others. Bart had his vasectomy on Friday, a decision he and I have been open about with our families and friends, despite constant advice against our choice. The feeler part of me wants so badly to keep harmony that I probably wouldn't have told anyone, and maybe wouldn't have decided on sterilization if it weren't something really important to me, and us. I know I can't succeed without the input of others and I'll value my family's opinion, but in this case, I knew their opinion and what they have said before about our choice so I didn't send the issue up the flagpole for one last round of discussion. Disappointment #2.

I know our loved ones deserve a chance to be heard. I just felt like they had already had that chance, and they didn't agree and had more to say. Now it seems I've harmed some relationships by handling the situation the way we did, making a decision and carrying it out without calling extra attention to it. I'm sorry it happened this way, it's the peace-keeper's worst nightmare when you try to avoid conflict and get it instead. I'll have to keep that in mind in the future and try to avoid another land mine of disappointment.

Finally, the worst possible disappointment, one that results from pure selfishness that I wouldn't have normally acted upon... the boobs. I've wanted to get breast augmentation my whole adult life. I've talked before about my inner conflict about them and recently I decided I would pull the trigger and buy a pair. It's entirely for me. It's expensive. It's controversial. I didn't want to share the entire process with everyone because it is so deeply personal an issue. Some details made it back to my family, who didn't know I was considering them, much less that I have a surgeon and have booked a surgery date. They seemed hurt that I would go that far without discussing the choice, which wasn't my intent at all. I just wanted to keep some of it to myself. I feel horrible, and worse, now I feel bad about choosing to do it in the first place and doing it so selfishly.

The moral of this story? If you value harmony, and treasure values, disappointment hurts. If you're a 'perceiver' according to Myers Briggs, you wait until you've gathered what you think is enough information and then make a decision, but gathering info will always be easier than making the decision.

And I'm sorry, all of these disappointments could have been avoided.

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