The Bitter Sting of Disappointment

Growing up, I had a great family despite losing my Father at a young age, my home had triple the love of everyone else I knew. But, my teen years had some really messed up things happen that hurled me into every kind of therapy imaginable. I hated group therapy. Those people, in my opinion at that time, were NOT going through what I was. They couldn’t possibly know, right? And I felt they were such losers that I could never be one of THEM!!! Ah, the bitterness.

Now some of my pain was real, some imagined. I was a victim of some very ugly circumstances that I didn’t have control over as a young teen. Most therapy was a joke.
I only had one counselor make a statement that had made any sense to me. It didn’t make sense at the time, but like fine wine, it aged over time and matured appropriately. He had planted a seed that grew many years after the fact. He said,

"When you have expectations of other people, you ultimately will experience disappointment."

Wow, dumb at the time…true after it sat with me. It’s not that I assumed everyone was a jerk until otherwise proven the way I had translated it at that time, but I realized that many of the expectations I had with people were a flight of the imagination. I would fabricate a dialogue between me and another person in the way I wanted it to go. Ok, this person is going to walk through the door, thrown down everything they are carrying, pick me up and sweep me off my feet. They will ignore ringing telephones to hug me. They will say the exact thing I have been imagining them to say for the last four hours before they arrived. And then, OMG! They DON’T do that! They DIDN’T say that! Not even close!

And then the bitter sting of disappointment settles in. How could they do this TO ME!! How dare they? What a crappy person they are!

Ok, they very well may be a crappy person for many other reasons, but truthfully you know what I was doing? I was CONTROLLING them. I became like the little girl with two dolls, controlling body movements, controlling dialogue. They were not allowed to even entertain the idea that they were having a bad day or more simply just be themselves. They had to act in the manner that I envisioned, dreamed up, imagined. They had to at least meet if not exceed my expectations of them and if they didn’t, I would crumble to the floor in a heap of disappointment and my world be over.

I hate the feeling of disappointment. It’s kind of like when Dane Cook talked about his drunken father being unable to take them to Benson’s Animal Farm. Nobody likes to feel that sting. The only emotion to equal disappointment for me is regret. I hate regret also.

On so many occasions now, I hear that counselor’s voice in my head. The only thing anyone in therapy ever said that became real for me. If I had just allowed the universe to flow the way it was supposed to and take each moment as it comes, I don’t expect someone to do what I imagined them to, my disappointment could be replaced with a new emotion; pleasant surprise!

Or not, I’m just rolling with it all now. :)

Have an amazing week ahead!
Karen :)

(I don’t know that I need another quote here…ha!)

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