Saturday, April 26, 2008

[assumptions] things are not always as they seem

You know, when I went round the blogs in the last few days, the number of bloggers referring to "posting will be lighter" and who seem to have issues was eyebrow raising.

The bottom line is that we never know what's really going down inside with fellow bloggers or even friends in RL. A glance across at MyBlogLog here and I could name five of those immediately where I suspect things aren't completely happy at that end.

On Friday I had a meeting with a girl who was meant to have phoned the night before and had seemingly ignored my two e-mails. On pure speculation I went along so at least I could say I'd turned up.

Even though it had been arranged, still it was a shock when she actually walked through that door and on time too. I think you can imagine the opening topics after the greeting - what happened? What went wrong and so on. As became apparent - in that I'm helping her sort the trouble out even today - she had some major issues and these aren't just words - I saw the documents.

Ten days ago I got a phone call in the middle of the night from an airport. She assumed I was asleep but actually I was in the little room dealing with a health matter. When I phoned her back, neither number answered so I assumed she was p---ed off by that. Actually she'd had all her documents and phone stolen, had missed the plane and was stuck in the airport. She'd used her last local change to make that call.

Why do we assume that we have the cares of the world on our own shoulders but the other person doesn't? You can never tell from appearances and that's the bottom line here. You can never tell.

Cuts both ways though. Five years ago I assumed all was well when in fact a particular lady was playing me like a violin and getting deeper and deeper into subterfuge. Truth was I never tumbled to it, even when all the signs were there to see.

Three people have e-mailed me personally since yesterday [well actually 47 have but most of these were the usual matters], I've missed two birthdays in the last few days, three people in RL are feeling neglected and there are some health issues which we needn't go into. A friend flew in last week, called twice and has now flown out again. He's not going to understand that the phone had been cut off and then other things hit last week.

I know that each of these feels, maybe not peeved but a bit hurt by what looks like callous disdain, especially as I seem to be blogging jauntily, provoking as usual and visiting the same three or four blogs.

If it looks as if all is well, nothing could be further from the truth.

An inkling of this came out in two posts on Thursday but it was disguised to the point where Wolfie felt it was "overdramatizing". I smiled at that and poured a whisky and toasted him. Without going into detail, as the blog doesn't seem to be the place for that and I'd prefer to do an ostrich, I'm in - excuse the French - deep s-i- on four fronts, to the point where the two choices are to laugh or cry.

Today I'm going to have to call in some favours which I'd prefer not to do.

One of the blogfriends who e-mailed me has real health concerns. Another is at the end of the tether. One feels very hurt and rightly so. All with their own issues and troubles. How to cope with and help these friends? The issue seems to be one of over-extending - trying to take on too much with thin margins for error and when it fouls up, it fouls up big.

I suppose what I'm saying in this post is not to assume things which seem one way but might not be, in point of fact. And that applies to my own assumptions as well.

Personally, I think a combination of prayer, networking and grovelling apology might sort things out in the end. Otherwise I have no idea what to do.



I get so frustrated when people assume the simplest and incorrect assumptions. That's lazy thinking to me.
I hope that your health is not too poor, James.

Ginro said...

I agree with Ubermouth, too many of us make assumptions and jump to conclusions based on our own prejudices, and it is a very lazy thing to do.
Many people don't even stop to consider the possibility that another person isn't being rude or anything but has real, genuine problems that are difficult to sort out.
I've been in it deep a number of times myself the past six years so although I don't know what your specific problems are I do have an understanding of how difficult things can get, and how important moral support is.
This is a really good post and is one of the reasons I hope you don't have to stop blogging as you get your thoughts across very well which are a pleasure to read.

katekatekatekate said...

Ditto and ditto. James you write lengthy posts but i read them and am interested which as i have a short attention span is an achievement so please keep it up. ;-)

Semaj Mahgih said...

Uber, Ginro and Kate - I have to say I appreciate the comments and that lifts me no end, I can tell you.

CherryPie said...

I hope you manage to sort things out.

You need to take time out for yourself too, I have seen what happens to people who overstretch and forget to look after themselves as well. It's not good!

Wolfie said...

I can only base my thoughts on what you reveal James, I was being terribly rational about it. You can blog from anywhere baring prison or the grave and that's the kind of approach I take towards grim possibilities. Find the black Knight within.

jmb said...

Even though we are all quick to make assumptions I think you will find most people are more forgiving than you expect after some kind of explanation. Usually the person feels embarrassed and a bit ashamed for jumping to conclusions.

Apologies and grovelling go a very long way to setting things to rights you know, even if one doesn't believe one has done anything wrong. One should say one is sorry for the misunderstanding or similar.

You don't have to be forthcoming to us but try to be with the people who really count.

I do hope you can get your personal issues solved soon James, I'm sure it's quite stressful, and that you continue to blog on, entertaining us or causing us to pull out our hair, depending on what you are highlighting in that particular post.

Sending you a virtual hug from Canada, regards


All I can offer is, endure. My farmer grandfather used to say, "Things are never as good as you hope, or as bad as you fear." And I think you're right, we often assume others are OK because they're keeping up a good shop front. Aldous Huxley, in "Island", has a parrot trained to repeat two basic (not exclusively) Buddhist principles: "Here-and-now" and "Karuna" ("compassion").

Semaj Mahgih said...

Wise words all. I'd add inner strength as a necessity and I'm afraid I cheat here. Mine comes form Above.