I knew it was going to be a rough vacation with my girlfriends when I woke up on Friday morning and my right eye was crusted shut. I have a cold so I blew it off, but as the day went on, it kept getting worse.
You guessed it. Pinkeye.
I do not even remember the last time I had pinkeye or even if I have ever had it before. I’m sure I have, but maybe as a kid it wasn’t quite as traumatic? No wearing contacts? No MAKEUP? Is this a joke? I called up my doctor’s office, but of course could not get in for an appointment- the triage nurse was quickly able to diagnose me over the phone and get me some drops. Thinking they would be some kind of magical drops, I vowed to power through the weekend despite the fact I was sure to look like a freak show. I prayed that my friends would have pity on me and opt to lay low.
Not only was there zero pity for my situation, I was called a toddler and my bleeding eye (yes, it actually started bleeding) was a hoax I perpetrated so I could avoid going to the bar. I believe the exact words were “You can cry all you want Joanne but the truth is you didn’t start having issues with your eye until we changed the plans into something that you didn’t like.” Ouch. No, here is the truth: I had been dealing with my eye issues long before I even stepped on the gas to take this trip and in my attempt to not ruin anyone’s good time, I didn’t want to complain about how much my eyes hurt. When trying to remove the disgust that was flowing from my eye, it started bleeding and it freaked my shit out. I was desperately trying to fix it so I COULD go out- not so I could get out of it. I was willing to go out despite looking like a circus act because that’s what THEY wanted. Of course I didn’t want to go. Who would want to go out when you can’t wear makeup, have discharge blocking your vision not to mention what felt like a dagger being gouged into my eye. But that’s what friends do for each other. They often do things they don’t want to do no matter how hard it is. We had plenty of liquor. Plenty of food. We had been having a good time. There was no reason to go out.
One of my main issues was the fact that staying behind meant handing over the keys to the SUV I borrowed from my husband for the weekend. You should know that my husband is strangely protective of his vehicle. Only having driven it a handful of times myself, you can probably understand my hesitation when it came to handing over my keys to a bunch of girls about to go out to drink. BUT, apparently, this makes me a toddler, or maybe it was the fact that I was freaking out over BLOOD coming out of my eye that made me a toddler. Apparently crying over my medical condition makes me a faker and a liar. Apparently crying because I was worried I was messing up the weekend up for everyone is childish. Apparently, someone forgot to pack their Midol. In no way did I deserve this “scolding”. Sure, I get annoyed when I don’t get my way. I am not the first person to think something awful about someone but I WOULD NEVER SAY IT TO THEIR FACE. With no medical care on the island (seriously), I opted for an ice pack and a prayer. I handed over my keys and begged my friend not to drink and drive (should I have really had to beg?). I cried for the next two hours. Cried to my husband. Cried to my sister-in-law. Cried. Cried. Cried. I knew I had lost a friend in that one single moment and mostly because it screamed to me what she truly thought of me. The girls came back from what was apparently a disaster. The food took forever (which by the way meant that I wouldn’t get dinner- I had a little box of cereal for dinner). My best friend, sunburned and dehydrated, puked up her dinner at the bar. All the gift shops were closed (duh). In a twisted way, I took pleasure from their disaster. I felt like saying “I told you so.” The rest of the weekend proceeded to be awkward. I was given no apologies.
I have never been so happy to get home to my family.
Somehow, we build up our expectations for vacations and events SO much that the reality of them isn’t quite as exciting. We don’t know how to roll with the punches and make the best out of situations. Tempers flare. Words are said. I have never seen this side of this particular friend. The whole situation has made me realize how much I have changed since I met all of these girls. How much ALL of us have changed. Being a wife and a mother has taught me great lessons in patience. My former hot head has been replaced by this logical adult head. I’m a little softer now. A little more tolerant. I prefer sitting on the couch with my friends with a bottle of wine over going out anywhere. I prefer a movie or a show over going to the bar. I love that I am settled. Happy. I love my life. Not many have been able to roll with the changes alongside me and it saddens me at the thought of having to let someone else go. My few friends are so dear and precious to me that I would never DREAM of talking down to them or treating them the way I was treated. If there was even a fleck of truth to what she had said, I might not be so angry about it, but it was so far off base that it replays in my mind over and over. I am so broken. So hurt.
I worried a little over writing about my weekend in fear of who might see it; however, I don’t think any of my feelings are exactly a secret. I don’t want to be childish, mean or even remotely stoop to that level, but I needed to share my side of the story. I needed to rant. It is the epitome of why I started this blog in the first place.
I want people to understand that the words you say matter and can be hurtful. I’m not sure there is ever a time or place to be overly blunt and rude; however, if your mean words and thoughts are going to be at the expense of someone’s feelings, perhaps it is best to keep them to yourself. Chances are, when you take a deep breath, you’ll realize that you were just overreacting in the first place.