Today didn’t start off so well. In the morning I was upset about the mean things people said about me. I was messing around on Facebook and got tired of looking at the blank head that is my profile picture so I tried to replace it with a cute animal picture from the internet but I couldn’t get it to upload. I looked up a zillion tutorials on how to upload pictures from the internet and they all made it seem like it was just the simplest thing in the world but no matter what I did I couldn’t get it to work. I got so frustrated I started crying. My mother asked me what was wrong. I didn’t want to tell her about the mean comments so I just told her about the internet images. She told me that was a ridiculous reason to cry. A few minutes later she told me I shouldn’t whine about my silly little problems because my stepfather had just been told he might have to have his colon removed.

It seemed like things could only go downhill from there but they actually went uphill. When I was trying to make various cute animal images my profile pic I noticed to my surprise that my computer had a camera on it that I could use to take a profile picture of myself. I initially didn’t want to do that but when I realized I was never going to succeed at making my profile pic a fennec fox, I figured I might as well make it an actual picture of myself. Once I’d put up an actual picture myself I figured I might as well add people to my friends list and write statuses.

I know that seems like no big deal but to me it kind of was a big deal. It felt like a breakthrough of sorts. Several years ago I had a Facebook account with friends, pictures and statuses but I shut that account down. The reason I shut that account down was because I was ashamed of what my life had become. I was ashamed to share that life with my friends. I drifted away from my friends and would ignore them when they reached out to me because I just couldn’t handle all the shame and embarrassment I felt.

For years I had no friends at all. Then I started to develop online friendships and to re-connect with real life friends that I’d lost touch with. Today I sent friend requests to those people. I liked to fantasize about what my life could have been like if things had turned out differently and I’d made better decisions. My life involved a job, a husband, kids and friends. I felt that if I couldn’t have at least one of those first three things on the list, I couldn’t have friends either. Now I realize that’s not true. A true friend will not judge me for my life circumstances because my life circumstances do not determine my worth. Even if I have a lot of psychological problems and have not been successful in life I can still be a good friend and I still have valuable things to offer other people. Of course my therapists and my family have been telling me similar thing for years. Of course I knew it was true intellectually but I think today is the first time I felt it emotionally.

In addition to making friend requests, I blocked a bunch of people who made mean comments about me. It wasn’t that I was concerned about them harassing me. It just felt good to block them. It felt like a symbolic way of telling them “Fuck you, I don’t care about you, you have no power over me anymore.” Apparently some of those people are worried about me stalking/harassing them but they don’t need to worry because I have zero interest in doing that. An online friend told me that the people who care about me know I’m not a psycho stalker and that’s all that matters. She’s right. It doesn’t matter that a bunch of people I don’t like and don’t have to deal with anymore think badly of me. If taking potshots at me makes them happy they can knock themselves out.  I think this quote is appropriate: “The people who matter don’t mind and the people who mind don’t matter.”

The true highlight of my day was the 2nd annual GACK fun night. No, it has nothing to do with that gooey Nickelodeon substance, although I did have fun with it when I was a kid. GACK is pronounced like Jack and is made up of the initials of my godmother, her mother, my mother and me. It’s when we all gather together for dinner at a restaurant and have a good time talking about the past, present and future.  Last year it helped me when I was grieving the death of Dakota and it helped me this year too.

My godmother’s mother asked the always awkward question of “What are you doing these days?”  I started to feel uncomfortable and say “I’m not doing much of anything” but then I added “I’ve found an outlet in writing”. I told my godmother that I was writing a series of biographical essays for my family members and giving them to them for their birthdays. Since her birthday is coming up next, she’ll be the first to receive one. She was delighted to hear that.

There’s this blog too. I’ve only had it for about 10 days now but I think it has already helped me.

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