Is it possible to think “fuck all y’all” and simultaneously be totally zen in the moment? Like truly at peace and liberated by the not giving of a shit? I think this is a thing. I think it might be THE thing.
I found myself at work being really REALLY condescended to by someone who truly doesn’t know anything about my job. Someone who is in a management position within the same company but outside of healthcare. Someone who really hates to deal with educated women who are paid well for both our skills and our willingness to work in this particular environment.
The ignorant dismissal of my knowledge, the minimization of what I bring to the company, casually calling me “selfish” because I made a suggestion which would benefit my clinic. Really? It’s a character flaw to do the job I was hired to do? This kind of person, this kind of interaction is something I have long held a grudge against.
It starts with righteous indignation and ends hours later, my day ruined and circling the shame spiral of “WHY DID I FAIL TO BECOME QUEEN OF ALL I SEE??? IF I HAD BEEN MORE MOTIVATED IN MY 20’S, NO ONE WOULD DARE LOOK ME IN THE EYE! I WOULD BE FEARED IN EVERY LAND!!!” It’s basically an exercise in wishing I was a Disney villain so nobody could ever hurt me. Not super productive and usually ending with hate drinking.
But this is MY problem. Getting twisted into knots over not being respected by someone who genuinely does not matter in my life or even my career. If *I* know that I am smart and also excellent at my work and that my character is pretty effing awesome (even WITH that time I sort of flirted with being a blackout drunk) then what difference does it make what randoms think? It doesn’t. It does not matter.
I didn’t have to breathe deep or make an effort to hold my tongue. I didn’t feel bad or sad or mad. I smiled and I walked away and the only emotion the memory brought me was giggling and thinking “My, what a tiny untrained mind you have! The better to amuse me with, my dear!” in the cadence of Little Red Riding Hood. Which probably isn’t the thought process that the Buddah was going for but it was measurable growth in my internal monologue.
Basically I am learning to, in fact, stop creating bigger problems in my head than are actually confronting me. I’m learning to let go of that grudge against the universe for not giving me cartoon villain powers with which to smite the doubters. I can choose to not give a shit. I can choose the mental “fuck all y’all.” I can choose to look at myself and say “oh sweet precious sober kitten, put your claws away because there is no threat to you here.”