Self-perpetuated Disappointment and the Queen of its Kingdom … Me!
There once was a girl who grew older every year. Each year her birthday snuck up behind her and screamed, “Boo!” then ran away. Each year she convinced herself she would punch that monster in the face and have the most wonderful celebration of her birth that the world had ever seen. Her birthday would become a Holiday and everyone would observe it by eating cake, drinking Margaritas, and dancing till the cows came home. And each year, on the anniversary of her glorious birth, she found herself disappointed when the world failed to comply with this new and unofficial holiday.
There once was a girl who joined a contest and was SURE she would win. She studied the competition and told herself, “They’ve got nothing on you! You’ve got this in the bag.” After fully convinced and practically packed for the awards ceremony, it was announced that she did not, in fact, win. Suddenly all the confidence disappeared and more disappointment settled in.
There once was a girl who met a stranger. The two girls hit it off and she knew they would be BFF’s forever. After all, who wouldn’t want to be BFF’s with her? Duh! Well, the friendship didn’t quite last and the girl was soaking in her puddle of disappointment wondering what had gone wrong.
In one of my psychology courses, they referred to this type of behavior ‘fortune telling.’ A person gets themselves so worked up and convinced that what they feel should happen will. Sometimes it’s done in a negative light, other times it’s intended to be positive.
I’m a fortune teller. I predict that everything is going to be perfect and I’m going to have the time of my life and be famous and everyone will love me. I convince myself its true. Then, after it turns out my predicted future is a sham, I get swallowed by the giant monster of disappointment and begin an entirely new way of fortune telling. This time, however, I convince myself I’m never going to enjoy anything ever again, no one will ever know who I am, and I’ll spend the rest of my life in the garden eating worms.
Funny thing is; those things don’t happen either.
As a woman with bipolar disorder, I’ve become an expert fortune teller. I’ve also become the queen of Disappointment Kingdom. I predict and I predict and I get let down over and over again. I perpetuate my own let downs and then expect the pity of others when things don’t go the way I expected. It’s self –defeating behavior and has absolutely no positive side effects.
So today, my friends, I’m going to shatter my broken crystal ball and stop trying to decide my future before it even happens. The year WILL come when I have a perfect birthday, when I win a contest, when I become famous (maybe) and when I learn to accept that not everyone will love me, but those who are important to me do.
Do you fortune tell? Do you find it helpful? What can you do to stop setting yourself up for disappointment? Shall we have a crystal ball burning party?