So many of you reached out to me after yesterday's post, through personal messages and comments, to let me know I shouldn't be doubting myself and to let the jerks not bring me down.
I love you for it. Please know that.
And I feel honor-bound to state for the record that the jerk who was peeing all over my happiness wasn't the ex. Strangely enough, when I told him about the book deal, he was really, genuinely happy for me. And very, very gracious about it.
The hardest part about somebody not seeming to give a crap about your happiness or being utterly un-enthused by your success is when the jerk is not, in fact a jerk, but a family member that you love very much.
I shared with someone in my family something potential on the horizon that could be really great for me. I mean "just-as-great-as-the-book-deal" great for me. I'm excited. I'm nervous. I'm thrilled (and no, I can't tell you about it yet).
So I got my feelings hurt by someone - who I expected to be happy for me - that just plain couldn't have cared less about my news. And it occurred to me that this has been the reaction from this person just about anytime I have a success. It's not that they don't love me. I know they do. And of course, they're glad I'm doing well. But honestly, they're just not interested in what I do (writing) and I need to stop gauging my success on the interest of uninterested people.
It's a needy thing I do, and I need to really put it in perspective. Not everybody is going to be a fan of what I do. Not everybody who's a fan of me personally will read me, or enjoy reading me. Being related to me through blood or marriage doesn't automatically generate rabid interest in what I do, and I need to not make that personal when it likely isn't.
But it feels personal, because it's family.
Not sure how I'm reconciling that yet, but I do need to. I need to keep on rolling. And that's a whole lot easier to do when your readers reach out to tell you how much they care.
Thank you - all of you. You lift me up when I need it most. Give yourselves a hug for me.