As a writer, one who can control nearly everything in her made up world, I think I have a skewed expectation of people. I tend to map out conversations in my head, even knowing quite well that the real conversation will be nothing like the one I planned out so cleanly. Of course there will some conflict in the discussion, otherwise it wouldn’t be realistic or entertaining, but in the end it would conclude with the other party agreeing that I’m correct and perhaps also with my gaining a new perspective of the situation.
But life isn’t like that. Not at all. Not everyone wins. Not everyone gets what they want. Not everyone makes stellar choices. But certainly every decision comes with a consequence, sometimes one that the person didn’t expect. As a writer, I can control fictional characters. As a human, I can’t control anyone but myself. When it comes to human interactions, it’s terrifying to have that conclusion in the back of my head. Things won’t always go as I please. That might have slightly eluded me when I was confronted by my former managers at Legal Seafoods. That might have eluded a friend of mine who didn’t see a big twist in his life coming despite dancing along the edge of that big happenstance. It’s something that everyone must remember: you cannot make anyone do anything they do not want to do.
So as I sit here typing and packing and worrying and packing and packing and typing and worrying and packing, this thought jumped to the forefront of my mind. I’m making a huge life decision. For 6 or 12 months I’m leaving everything I’ve ever known, jumping off my stable cliff, and starting a new path on the way to my ideal future. It’s scary and exhilarating. Does everyone agree with my choice? No. Does anyone have a say in whether or not I go? No. …unless you include my dad who is giving me a small push financially. And do I want people to be upset by my choice? Certainly not. But if this is the choice I’m making, then those are the reactions I’ll get by those individuals that I cannot control. Influence, perhaps, but never control.
I guess I keep looking for the reaction to change in a way to favor my feelings. I want that nicely tied up ending to my story. I don’t know if that’s what’s coming though, but I can hope. And I will. But that’s one reason why I write. Real life is just too scary sometimes.