Have yourself a merry little…

People at work don’t like me.

I know I always joke about it, but people at work really don’t like me. Things have changed.

The teams and how we work, it’s all different, and the once-tight-knit group I was a part of either no longer work there or sit far away, and things have…changed. Which I already said, and hey, June, talk in circles. I wonder why you’re so very not loved.

It’s not my imagination. I’m talking about people are gathered, the hour before the holiday break, and I walk up and suddenly everyone’s phone is compelling and they walk away.

I’m talking weekly references to parties I wasn’t invited to, Instagram photos of happy hours I knew nothing about.

If I didn’t make an effort, I would go the whole day with no one talking to me about anything except, “Can you get this done right now?”

I’m not sure what I did, but at this point it doesn’t matter. Those are the facts, and I just have to muddle through it, keep my head down and do my work, which is why I’m actually there in the first place.

But here’s my problem: I built my social life around that place. When I moved here, I was a married person, and most of what I did was with Marvin. When he left, I started that job within the same month. So, for the last six years my social life was my work people and Ned, mostly.

Now there’s no Ned (although Ned still wants for there to be a Ned), and now suddenly I’m the workplace outcast. It’s probably because I’m older than everyone, or because I’ve been depressed since 2015, when there first was officially Not a Ned®. It’s probably a number of things, but what you can’t do is change anyone other than yourself.

If I knew what I’d done wrong, or even where to begin with who stopped liking me first, I’d ask. But it appears almost universal now, so I just work quietly and try to be pleasant.

Every year at Christmastime, I get blue. I hate this fucking holiday. If I could leave all of December and hang out in Tahiti, I would.

The good thing was, every year the Christmas stuff at work was pretty much the most celebrating I’d do, from the big work party to our team events. Those were fun. I was having fun with my friends.

When I was on the floor I worked on for five Christmases, right when it was time to leave for the holiday, I had a little tradition, just with myself.

I’d stand in the kitchen and look at the treats and the gifts (that’s another thing–just one person gave me a little gift this year. I saw little gifts on other desks, but not mine. And I thought of making little gifts myself, but didn’t want to hand one to someone who doesn’t like me) and give a small thanks to the universe for presenting me with such a great place to work during a time that I needed people. Every year, in the dimming light of the late-December afternoon, with everyone else bustling off to their families, I said thank you for making those people my family.

As I left yesterday without saying much to anyone, there was just one guy still working on my old floor. He’s married to another person at work, and I like them both very much, and they seem to still actually like me. They were the only two people to come to the happy hour I tried to have back in October.

“Merry Christmas,” I said to him as I left.

“I hope you’re going to have a good holiday,” he said, looking up from his work. “I remember how sad you were this past Valentine’s Day.”

I’d forgotten that. I’d forgotten how sad I felt, having zero Valentine for the second year in a row.

After work, I headed to the grocery store, and as I pulled up, I remembered that I’d spent 4th of July here this past year. I had nothing to do, and ended up watching the fireworks with the employees. We had a perfect view, with the vast sky looming over the parking lot.

It’s been a lonely fucking two years. Things are not going the way I thought they would. I thought by now I’d have met someone new. I thought I’d still be lucky enough to consider my coworkers family. I never in a million years thought I’d be alone at 52.

And I realize it must be my fault, some flaw in my character. Probably because my beauty and raw talent and animal sex appeal repel people. It’s probably m’boobs.

And maybe next year at this time, things will have turned around. But I thought that last year. And I thought it at Christmas of 2015. So maybe I’ll be exactly here again next year, and I have to find a way to be okay with that. I try to think about people who have it so much worse than me, people whose problems crush a lonely old lady’s.

If you’re one of them, if you’re one of the people whose Christmas is going to suck, one of the people whose life sucks right now, please know there is a person who is with you on that. Who’s muddling through this goddamn holiday, and this goddamn life, as best she can.

You are not alone.

Merry Christmas.

148 thoughts on “Have yourself a merry little…

  1. I don’t like holidays either. The bigger ones… Christmas and Thanksgiving aren’t so bad because I always go home and my family is pretty great. The smaller ones though. The ones where everyone just pops over to their in-law’s houses and everyone’s kids all get together and run through sprinklers in little bathing suits with tutus and grass stuck to their feet. Or the cousins all trick-or-treat together or everyone gets dressed up and goes to church then out to lunch at the same restaurant. My family is small and lives a few hours away and I don’t have kids. My friends take their kids to their in-laws and I try not to feel completely alone. I tell myself the same things “It’s not so bad” “Other people have much bigger problems” and those things are true. But that doesn’t make the lump in my throat any smaller or those little holidays any less sad.

    Like

  2. Well this just made me so sad, mostly because so much of it resonates with me. I constantly think/worry/obsess that nobody likes me. I understand how much that hurts and how lonely that feels. I so hope it’s just your imagination. If it’s not then I hope it’s because you’re older than them (your words, not mine). I’m the same age as you and in my mind I’m not old even though I joke that I am ancient. If you don’t count the fact that I live 70s music I certainly don’t feel old. But then I realize that I don’t drink anymore because of my migraines and I don’t know any current music or go to any concerts anymore (again with the stupid migraines!) and we don’t watch the same tv shows or movies and I no longer have the drive to work 1,000 hours a week and climb the corporate ladder and then I realize that I don’t have much in common with them anymore anyway. But over the years my circle of friends has gotten smaller, though I’ve had them forever, and we’ve now moved away and I have to wonder if anyone would even care if I was dead. You think you’re depressed? You are in good company, Coot! Anyway, you are so interesting and so funny that I can’t imagine that they don’t like you. I just can’t. But boy does it ever hurt to feel like they don’t. Hang in there. You know how to reach me. I’m always home. Reach out if you need some company.

    Like

  3. My computer is so slow that I began reading this post on SATURDAY and I just finished. I got interrupted quite a bit as well, but, still. I know it is over, but I hope that it was like ripping off a bandaid–quick and not as bad as you thought it would be.

    I have read all the comments. What a wonderful group of people! You all brighten my day!

    Sending love your way, June! Very nice, Coot.

    Like

  4. It’s 2:00 PM The 5 white candles on the Advent wreath are ablaze. The platter of cookies is on the table. The coffee is dripping. The tea kettle is hot. All are welcome.

    Like

    1. Time difference, so sorry, late here. Thank you PJ
      I would like one of the powdered sugar covered cookies I see there, if you don’t mind and I brought some packs of hot chocolate if anyone would care for a cup. PJ has hot water on. I think I am going to try the cinnamon tea first, then see what the day brings.

      Like

    2. PJ if you have a minute could you tell what the 5 white candles mean and what the heck is Advent?
      I was raised Catholic , but don’t remember many details.

      Like

  5. Sending you best wishes for turning things around. I rarely comment but I read you every day, and love your words, and enjoy hearing about your ups and downs…you always seem to find your way up again, and I have faith you’ll continue to do so. Happy New Year, June!

    Like

  6. My husband got released from the hospital last night. I even enjoyed watching It’s A Wonderful Life with him which I am ordinarily tired of.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. @ Pam, Soul Sister,
    I am so sorry for your troubles. Just to give you a ray of hope, my best friend’s daughter is a former heroin addict in recovery. She has a job, an appartment and a great guy, fellow addict she met at an NA meeting and they stay clean together. My friend is raising her daughter’ son whom they permenantly adopted but her daughter is very involved in his life. Things are so much better than the days she was robbing them, was homeless and on the streets! She just bought a car on her own. She will be starting college courses this semester. She works at the place that got her clean and plans a degree in psychology with an emphesis on addiction.

    Like

  8. Get on Twitter anytime in the next 24 hours using the hashtag #joinin and share your story, make someone laugh or feel less alone. I’ve been doing this for about 30 minutes tonight and it’s better than I thought it would be. People around the world are joining in to reach out and feel less lonely.

    Like

Comments are closed.