There are some promises we make to our friends and family solely to assuage or guilt. We promise to support someone and then when the time arrives we retreat. I am like a small child. If you make a promise to me. I take it to heart. I believe it with my whole heart. I get excited. I am not saying I can’t forgive a broken promise because I can. I understand that life gets in the way at times. My problem is with fake promises. The promises people make socially that they never have any intention of realizing. If you promise to do something for someone they will feel good until you don’t and then they will feel crushed/betrayed. Especially be wary when it involves the realization of someone’s dreams. I am not willing to give up on my dreams but there are so many out there who will if their support system short-circuits.
The worst for me is when after days, weeks, or even months of swearing they suddenly forget that they ever offered. I’d rather they just fessed up and apologized so we could move on without the awkwardness and prolonged disappointment. I will continue to wait for the fulfillment of said agreement so that everyday it does not occur I will feel betrayed all over again (provided the situation is not clarified). I have a high opinion of people. My expectations are set based on what you say about yourself. So if you say I am an honest person and I promise to do such and such then I expect you to do such and such (within reason of course). If you say I lie frequently then I won’t hold you to any promises nor will I seek out any agreements or situations where I must rely on you. I will still be your friend of course but I will be spared unnecessary grief. I can accept a lot, try me. Please do not make me a promise you have no intention of keeping no matter how pleasurable it might feel in the short-term. If you do make me a promise and feel ill-equipped or uncertain about your ability to carry out said promise then tell me so strait up.
Watch out for social promises, even online. I am a real person. A real person who just happens to be very sensitive and very gullible. The next time you think to invite someone to coffee that you don’t actually like because you feel obligated/pressured just walk away. If they press you say I am sorry I do not feel we are compatible. Will you hurt their feelings? Yes. Will it hurt them more to discover that you not only dislike like them but also pity them? Yes it hurts a lot worse trust me. A broken social agreement hurts and for those like myself who do not have a lot of friends or a lot of social finesse we take those agreements to heart.
Whew now that I have ranted.
I was watching a documentary on Sylvia Plath and in it they talked about how early on she mimicked the styles of various writers (something most writers do as part of the learning process). In time she not only wanted to match her idols she wanted to best them. She was extremely competitive. I realized that is precisely what is necessary. It is not good enough for me to write as well as my idols (not that I do I am just saying) if I want to be recognized in my lifetime the only way to do it is to surpass them. I have no idea how to surpass them. All I know is that they have a name and I don’t. That name means A LOT. I have read work on WordPress by unpublished writers that is easily as good as the so-called best but they remain unrecognized by the public because they haven’t established a name. We assume people are good if they are famous, we give them the benefit of the doubt. I am going to confess something right now I don’t care for Emily Dickinson. I checked out a collection of her poetry not long ago. She is one of the most famous poets of all time and given my own leanings I assumed I would enjoy her work. Only I didn’t. I kept reading hoping I’d “get it”. Hoping I’d warm up to her but it didn’t happen. I will try again at another time. Any famous poets you just don’t get? Without a name I have to have an talent that is completely indisputable. I can write. I feel that I am a poet. So I will write and one day maybe I will surpass all expectation.