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“tell it softly to me baby”

March 9, 2009

Oh, have i mentioned that we’re buying a house? (Technically, for the worriers, i am buying a house.) Of course i haven’t. I’m terrible at that sort of thing. I get terrible flack for the phrase, “it didn’t come up.” As in:

“You’re moving in two weeks?”
“Into the house you bought?
“And you didn’t even tell me!?”
“…it didn’t come up.”

I have had this basic conversation innumerable times on any number of subjects: boyfriends, girlfriends or the lack thereof; oh yeah, i date girls; jobs; drag; most recently, this house thing.

I feel the general need to defend my behavior, although i am fully aware that it is indefensible in most people’s eyes. I don’t see it changing soon. But i do now say “it didn’t come up” with a bit of a cringe, as if it were a question. The reason my lack of divulgence upsets people, i think, is that they feel i am keeping something from them. Which is, in fact, part of it – but not maliciously. It is more that i am a perfectionist, and i do not like to share things until they are a success, or likely to be. I don’t want to tell you i am going to buy a house, only to have to admit, say, that i didn’t qualify for a loan. Or about my amazing new girlfriend only to have to say awkwardly that we aren’t together a week later.

Oddly, neither of those things have ever happened to me. But the mindset is very ingrained. I just remembered one of my mom’s favorite stories about Tiny Brett: Tiny Brett says “Granny! I’ll read you The Polar Express.” (aside: one of the best picture books ever.) Granny is, of course, perfectly happy to humor her, assuming that it will be an interpretive reading based on the imagery. Tiny Brett sits down and reads the book, front to back, much to the surprise of Parents and Granny. It seems that i had not read at all until i was sure that i could do it properly. Apparently i did the same thing with speaking; spoke in monosyllables for long enough to scare everyone and then moved directly to sentences. I have always been the sort to do it properly or not at all.

So, that’s part of it, yes. The other part is, very literally, that “it didn’t come up.” I am highly unlikely to mention something, even something that i really would love for you to know, if i feel it is out of context. I feel, somehow, as though it is terribly rude of me to hijack the conversation into “what i’m excited about”-land. Which, most of the time, it wouldn’t be. Talking to people kind of scares me about half the time anyhow, and i’m always a little afraid that i’m “doing it wrong” or something.

Jamie was talking to one of my coworkers, and mentioned the house-buying. I had, of course, not told Coworker. They discussed the fact that i hadn’t, really, told anyone, whereas Jamie has, i think, told everyone she has spoken to in the last two months. Coworker said “Yeah, she’s kind of reserved, it’s probably good for her to have you around.”

Aww. It’s so true. [Though i’ve forgotten the exact phrasing now, which is sad because it was better.]

Lady Brett

"Your Little Secret" - Melissa Etheridge
4 Comments leave one →
  1. March 9, 2009 4:30 pm

    congratulations! wishing you much joy in your new home.

    now, i’m wondering what i should ask you about, just to be sure it came up. are you getting married? have you won the lottery or any other major prizes (e.g. nobel)? are you moving to a foreign country? have you written a novel recently, and if so, is it getting published soon? have you developed the ability to levitate or fly?

    i’m sure there’s more but that’s it for now. ;) just kidding. happy moving.

  2. March 9, 2009 7:14 pm

    Darling, may I just point out that managed to write a post about buying a house without actually revealing anything about said house/purchase/decision?!

    Well, I’m delighted for you in any case! Truly! Given your domestic proclivities, I know you’re going to **love** being a homeowner. I trust you’re getting a great mortage rate? We really have to look into refinancing since ours is high, ugh.

    Last but certainly not least, I must humbly apologize for having been so remiss regarding our little project. Perhaps after you get settled into your new home we could finish–that is if you can forgive my tardiness.



  3. March 10, 2009 10:16 am

    thank you, dears!

    leo – none of the above, but thanks for asking! i really value my inquisitive friends most of all =)

    sf – i’m getting there; promise. though, i think we all know how that goes – i think i’m too excited about this to completely drop the ball this time.
    and, on that subject, yes, of course i forgive tardiness. anyhow, this is the crazy season at work. that along with the house thing, i’m rather little use at the moment, but i’d love to finish it up when things calm down!

  4. March 12, 2009 12:46 am

    Congrats! That’s awesome. if you have the money, it’s a GREAT time to buy.

    Also, can I tell you that I wore your necklace in all the shows of the Vagina Monologues? And everyone told me how beautiful it was. i cannot thank you enough!

    Dear LBA and Jamie – come visit. Love, Essin’ Em

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