I have a really bad habit of hanging on to things long after I should have let them go. Not by anyone else’s standards, but from my own point of view, since I would know better than anyone else when it is time for me personally to let go of something. Anyway, I did a dumb thing the other night: I went looking somewhere I had not looked in over a year to see if the dust really had settled. I should have stayed away.
Anyway, I did a dumb thing the other night: I went looking somewhere I had not looked in over a year to see if the dust really had settled. I should have stayed away.
On the other hand, I got another pretty clear message from the universe, or God, or who/whatever, that I was right about that person to begin with and that I should probably stop worrying about it and feeling guilty about my part in things. My philosophy is that a lot of so-called sins are easy to fall into through lack of boundary-setting, and so one’s participation in them is sometimes passive.
For instance, an opportunity to commit adultery might more or less fall into one’s lap. But thieving is always an active sin, as in the thief must make an active choice to steal and then seek out the coveted item(s). As such I hold thieving to be a more serious sin than most others a person could commit. (I’m not letting passive sinners off the hook, just paying them a little slack because people don’t always actively seek out wrongdoing, and setting boundaries and defending them is not the easiest thing for some people to do.)
For instance, an opportunity to commit adultery might more or less fall into one’s lap. But thieving is always an active sin, as in the thief must make an active choice to steal and then seek out the coveted item(s).
As such I hold thieving to be a more serious sin than most others a person could commit. (I’m not letting passive sinners off the hook, just paying them a little slack because people don’t always actively seek out wrongdoing, and setting boundaries and defending them is not the easiest thing for some people to do.)
As you might have guessed, I found out that a person with whom I share a long history of drama and heartache is a thief, we met long time ago and we were pretty close. On top of everything else–by her own admission, and in a tone which said that she didn’t consider stealing from me to be wrong. And I had a lot of doubts about my part in things with her, and I still think I was a jerk and behaved immaturely in some instances.
But considering that her household was always a lot messier than mine and I never once got the impulse to steal anything from her, I think it is telling that she bragged about taking something out of my apartment and that she used the fact that my apartment was a mess to excuse her behavior. And it wasn’t something minor, like a bookmark or a nickel. It was an inkjet printer.
So I’m just not going to worry about it anymore. I had suspected for quite a long time that when she put on a public show of caring about me and wishing me the best that it was just an act, and that her behavior indicating that she didn’t care how she behaved or how that affected others was closer to the mark in terms of her true character. Now I know that is true, so as far as I’m concerned, all bets are off.
I feel sorry to a certain extent for the people who are in her daily life now, but at least one of them has known her since 2002 and ought to be savvy about her by now, so too bad for him. The rest of them will have to find out how she is sooner or later and it probably won’t be a fun experience. But that is not my problem anymore. Frankly, it never really was.
Unfortunately, though, I still have to associate at least a little bit longer with two people who were close to her, and one or both of them knew she stole my printer and neither of them told me. They then had access to read of her boasting about the theft, and still said nothing. She didn’t have keys here, so one of them would have had to let her into my apartment in the first place, and this after she had not set foot in the place for almost a year and had written me off as not worth her time (so she had no reason to be there to begin with). So I’m looking askance at my association with both people and wondering when the other shoe is going to drop (or
So I’m looking askance at my association with both people and wondering when the other shoe is going to drop (or another one–we’ve been suffering from footwear avalanches around here for quite a while now), and also wondering exactly why I should trust them to tell me what the weather is outside, much less in matters like helping me care for my daughter, which both have expressed interest in doing.
Haven’t done what you’d call getting a sign from the Universe about that, and I’m not a paranoid schizophrenic who reads signs in everything she sees and hears–it just seems like I get a clear signal every now and again as though something way bigger than me is clocking me upside the head and yelling, “Hey STUPID! Yoo-hoo! Lookie here!” In this case I haven’t got a whole lot of good alternatives, at least not as far as I can tell.
However, I have gotten more signs about the feasibility of staying in this neighborhood another year.
The first was what for all the world sounded like a semiautomatic, or more than one, going off in the alley behind my building early yesterday morning. I had already stayed up late and gone to bed after 3 am; when the noise went off I had not yet gone to sleep, although I had begun to drift. Thea jerked and snuggled close to me, my heart started racing like mad, and after that I couldn’t sleep at all. To top it off, she had gone to bed early and after the noise happened she gradually woke up and stayed that way. So I was well and truly screwed.
We get a lot of talk around these-here parts about how the neighborhood’s going to be revitalized, but the truth is that what we really need are good cops and an effective anti-gang program here, and we have neither. It’s as if they take all the bad cops with attitude problems out of Upper Arlington and dump them here, and we don’t have enough police, either. (Maybe they send the absolute worst ones to Cleveland and Detroit?) We’ve already had one gun go off next to my building, about two and a half years ago.
I know for a fact that one was, because I saw the shell on the sidewalk the next day. We’ve been lucky here so far in a neighborhood where I hear the gangs shoot back at the cops, but our luck is going to run out eventually, so it would be really stupid from a safety standpoint if I renewed my lease for another year.
On top of that I have had almost-constant problems with plumbing issues in this apartment since I moved in, and apparently the landlord’s idea of “maintenance” is to grab random scruffy-looking guys off the street, hand them tools and pay them to come into my apartment, look at the problem, tinker with it a little bit, and leave, and the problem is always the same or worse after they leave than it was when they came in. Except for when they installed a new central heating system, but for all I know they screwed that up too and it just isn’t obvious yet. Although they smoked in my kitchen that time without asking me, so they’re still jerks.
Right now it’s water leakage under the bathroom sink, apparently involving one of the intake pipes (or whatever you call it–one of the pipes bringing in water, not the drainpipe). Maintenance guy showed up yesterday to look at it, said he had no idea what was going on, tightened a few things, told me to call him when the leak happened again (it’s intermittent) and left. After he left, it happened again.
But what is that? A real plumber would come in, look at the problem, go “Hm, I can’t tell where it’s coming from,” and then do something to find out. But I don’t think I have ever had a real plumber come in here in the over three years I’ve lived here. It’s always some yo-yo with a toolbox who would fit in better out on the street corner with a sandwich board.
At this point I’m inclined to just not bother anymore. It’s not my building. Every time I call them about a problem there has to be stupidity and incompetence. And I don’t even like those guys, and I sure don’t want to have to keep calling them back about the same issues over and over again. And if the landlords don’t want to take care of their building, it’s no skin off of my nose. Not my problem. They’re probably just waiting for the neighborhood to turn around so they can cash out, anyway–even if they ruin the building with their negligence, they’d still get a pretty penny for the lot.
So it’s as if both the building and the neighborhood are telling me to get the hell out while the getting’s good. And I hate to do it, because this is the first home of my own I’ve had since I left Memphis in 2000, and this is where I brought my daughter home from the hospital. So far she has grown up playing in this living room. I know a few of the people around here, I recognize people at the grocery store and the laundromat, I mourned the passing of a neighbor who died in a bad way… we sort of belong here.
Only… not. And between the demonstrated lack of support from people who ought to be supportive of us, and the demonstrated lack of suitability of this neighborhood, could be we’ll be making a long trip come July. My mom still needs my help, I’m pretty sure, and my daughter needs to be around my family. At least, some of them.