I have had the song "Mr. Cellophane" in my head all day today. The one from the musical "Chicago". It came up this morning in a conversation I was having with my therapist, actually. I was trying to describe how I feel a good deal of the time to my family and friends and this is what popped into my mind. All day I haven't been able to shake the song (my son used to call this a "brain worm". )
It's not really the catchy tune that hooked me, but rather the feeling of the song and some of the lyrics. "...oh you can see right through me..." When I am a little overwrought and feeling like I am likely the last person on everyone around me's list, I feel like cellophane. You know it's there, but you can see right through it as if it weren't. Lately I'm humming this tune more than I would like.
I used to have more people in my life to whom I could turn for a good ear, a little advice and little (less or more) judgement. It's at these times I miss Kate most of all, God rest her. She always seems to be sympathetic and encouraging and allowed me to vent, as we all need to do from time to time. I don't think I have had that luxury in my life for some time now - that is, the comfort and security with another individual to let it out and vent with no fear. Not that I just want a bitch session with a friend - I'm really talking about something deeper than just moaning about kids, husbands, pets and families.
It is about being seen. I'm rather tired of not being truly seen. I'm REALLY tired of being the one everyone calls to fix their problems but not really having anyone who can help fix mine. (Not sure my issues are actually fixable - that's something to chew on...hmmm). My daughter pops in my office or room nearly daily with "just a little favor" she needs, or calls me on the phone at the last minute to find something, do something or go somewhere for her. Frustrating because with a little planning she needn't rely on me. Kind of like my mother-in-law, whose philosphy seems to have been "why do it when someone can do it for me" for the last 30 or more years. Or my son, who ignores a text message from me asking when he may be available to help me with my garden - about an hour's worth of work I cannot do alone, but when he needs a little cash it's an easy call to Mom.
So today it was suggested to me that others may not know what I need because I don't vocalize my needs. I did think on this alot today, and have realized that this is by-and-large the truth. I have my moments of frustration or anger when I'll just blow up, but I'm more or less a calm person, so this doesn't happen very often. So it got me thinking, how in the world should I or can I tell those around me what I need for my own happiness. Seems selfish to me to ask, but there it is, I guess I will have to, otherwise, they will continue to "see right through me". The old adage, "Ask and Ye Shall Receive."
It's the asking that's the hard part of course. Everyone carrys around their own sack of "stuff". The worries, troubles, doubts, fears, personal histories, and experiences that make us individual. Some people cannot look past their own stuff to others' stuff, as much as we may almost want to WILL it so. It's that measure of not wanting to feel like cellophane, but rather having someone express a care or concern without having to ask. Maybe that's unrealistic? I don't know. I really don't. I have a hard time expressing my troubles - especially to those really closest to me because I don't want to burden any of them further, and this is particularly so for my hard-working husband.
So it seems its a bit back to the rock and hard place for me. I AM fed up with being taken advantage of, and being "looked right through" by my family especially, but by the same token, I don't want to add a log to the fire and create more of a fuss than is needed. It will just boil down to communication of course, and being (somewhat) a writer you'd think I'd have this covered, but nothing is further from the truth, really. It's a WHOLE lot easier to talk to cyberspace than face to face with a human being. It's why kids get so worked up about Facebook comments and cyber-bullying. Half of it wouldn't go on if they had to be said aloud to be heard. But I digress...
I have to work on this communication thing. My husband comes home from a fishing trip tomorrow. I haven't really had time to sit and talk with him for more than 10 minutes in probably a month or more. I guess there's no time like the present. IN the meantimes...."Cellophane, Mrs. Cellophane...Oh you can look right through me...."