I’m disappointed. I am not perfect nor do I have any delusions that I am. I have never claimed to be perfect. I make mistakes. The difference between myself and most others is I have little difficulty owning my mistakes and making the necessary corrections to eliminate making the same mistakes in the future
I find feeling disappointed is becoming more and more prevalent in my life as I grow older.
I used to say, “I’m not sure why i become upset when I’m disappointed.” I know the answer.
My parents did what I would call a pretty amazing job raising me. Of course I didn’t think that at the time. Throughout my youth my parents instilled a solid set of values in myself and my sibs. We learned and more importantly understood the importance of respecting ourselves and those around us. We learned the value of being a family and being there for family.
I’ve been a social worker since 1985. As the years have progressed my head has slowly come down from the place I had previously occupied in the clouds. I started to come down to reality. I always expected more from the professionals around me. I have high expectations and I think they are realistic. If I call you I expect a return call within a realistic time frame. If I’ve been able to offer you help as a friend, I would expect that favor also be returned.
Almost two-years ago I left a job I really enjoyed. I worked with patients and coworkers with whom I really enjoyed working. As the years progressed, the economy grew worse, NYS, like other states made drastic cuts to the state budget. “Do more with less” became the new mantra. There is only so many times one can bend a piece of metal before it breaks.
The stress levels I experienced became unhealthy. I decided a change was due. I know this decision was disappointing to some but my mental and physical health were on the line.
I traded that job for another. When I left that job I “promised” to keep in touch with my old friends. I accomplished that feat to the best of my ability. There were those balls which I refused to juggle any longer as there was no reciprocity in the relationship. In the past I would have done more, worked harder to foster the growth of a relationship. Not today. Today I am aware of the effort and emotional cost of balancing the relationship on my own. It is a cost which I am no longer interested in incurring.
Not long ago I had coffee with a coworker with whom I thought I had a relationship worth maintaining. I was under the impression, as misguided as that may have been we were going to talk about our lives. My assumption was correct, at least initially. When we decided to part ways, she asked, “Is there anything else you want to say to me?” I’m sure the look on my face was one of confusion as I really didn’t understand what she was hoping to hear. That look rapidly changed as it dawned on me why she was asking that question. She wanted me to apologize for not calling or emailing her. As I questioned her desire, she said, “You told me you would keep in touch.”
The other day I received a call from a very good friend who I had the luxury of working. He remains employed by the same employer. He said, “I want to give you a heads up.” After I left that employer I continued to be involved on a voluntary basis with many of the therapeutic outdoor activities with which I had been previously involved. Another trip is forthcoming and I was told my continued involvement was “in question” because I had not kept in touch with my previous boss. Allegedly it was said, “Since I have not communicated with her I could not be trusted to accurately communicate on the trip.”
My parents tried to teach me disappointment is a lot like death and taxes; three things which can be counted on in life. I understood this and never questioned it. I did not understand or perhaps I did not want to admit how a friend could do this to a friend. I owned my responsibility. I could have tried harder but you didn’t try at all. It may be a forgone conclusion my continued involvement with the therapeutic trips may have come to an end. I find that sad and disappointing.
I will learn and grow from this experience as I have learned and grown from other experiences. I am certain as long as I grace God’s green earth there will be future disappointments. I refuse to my expectations. Perhaps I need to remove people from my life. I find it sad it may come to that conclusion, but that is life.
I will continue to live my life, disappointment be damned.