This is the Life of a Redhead

Sunday, May 30, 2010

A series of bad luck, concentrated in a few days, inspires this rant

I’ve often battled with the idea of fate. It’s easy to dismiss it as superstition, or worse, as something closely linked to religion. I find it difficult, however, to look at my incredible back luck and brush it off as mere coincidence. I’m usually afraid to tell people that I may believe in some kind of higher power. They interpret it as faith in God; they see me as a spiritual person. Spiritual, I think, is one of the least desired words I’d like ascribed to me.

An ex-boyfriend criticized for reading into things too much. He looked down upon my efforts to find meaning in things. He said I took everything too personally. At first I tried to combat these claims, but now I admit that they are true. But these are not faults in my personality, as he desperately tried to prove. These are characteristics that I embrace. They allow me to be hopeful and optimistic, despite the fact that even the smallest of victories is so rare in my life.

I sound like I suffer immensely, but I suppose this isn’t true. I live in a decent-sized house in a friendly suburban neighborhood; I go to an acclaimed private university; I have a generally supportive family. All the amenities that make me middle-class are at my grasp, and I am thankful for it, but they are not as they appear: Our refrigerator and cupboards are nearly bare; I go to school for free because I can’t afford tuition; my mother is a paranoid schizophrenic and is far removed from my personal affairs.

Sometimes I wonder what I did to deserve such setbacks in my life, but then I assess my personality and my actions, and I think that I might encourage these difficulties. I know that I am selfish, aggressive around my family, and overtly emotional. I am a woman full of faults, and I often play the victim. I claim to hate drama, but I think there is an overwhelming part in my subconscious that thrives on it. This part is a key role to my identity as a human, but more importantly, I think it has its own deeper subconscious that is driven by fate.

Over the years, I have noticed that I continuously fall into cycles. Each time I try to break a cycle, I inadvertently fall into another one. I’m always determined to perform my actions differently, and usually to great success, but nevertheless it seems that I cannot escape the behaviors and relationships that revolve around my life. The most depressing realization I have had is that I don’t think I’m meant to have meaningful relationships. I have not been able to hold onto friendships for more than a few years, and the ones I have managed are cold, robotic formalities relating to the shell of a person I once was. Worse, is when I am surrounded by old friends and I realize that I have long since regarded any aspect of my personality to being in alignment with theirs. The few people I have met, ones where I feel odd connections or strange bursts of fondness, tend to be blocked in extraordinary ways. I still try to make these relationships work. I look at every problem and invent solutions that build from realistic to unfathomable, and no matter how close I am to creating what may be a permanent contact, fate will jump in the way and quickly break the connection, leaving me in a proverbial wasteland full of trash and darkness and fizzling electrical lights.

The easiest excuse for all of this is that, simply, I’m not a likeable person. This is the reasoning I believed in for the majority of my life, but somehow I’ve managed to conjure a skewed sense of self-confidence, and I refuse to accept this theory as truth. I admit that I can be an exhausting person, especially when I am in my judgmental phases, but I am always very kind and supportive of my friends, and on the rare occasion that someone gets close to me, they become one of the most important parts of my life. The truth is, I can be pretty wonderful.

I think that sometimes things just are not meant to be. Fate is a kind and wicked force that pushes me along in life, dangling my hopes and dreams above my nose, flipping a two-headed coin to see if I can actually grasp my aspirations. Sometimes I think that if I fight adolescently, trusting in powers of ambition, honesty, and love, I may be able to defeat what fate has decided for me and take control of my life. Unfortunately, a menacing power that fate unleashes is the ability to turn one cynical and hopeless. I think that my undying optimism, which shines through even in the most bleak of situations, proves that there is still a fighting chance for me.

I am here to disprove the fate I so faithfully believe in.

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