Monday, August 21, 2006

Who You Calling a Victim?

I'm sitting here waiting for another 25 minutes to tick by so I can call the Victim Assistance people at the FBI. How's that for an opening sentence? Lousy actually, when I think about it. One of my more useless excercises has been avoidance of the 'victim' label.

It's one of the reasons I didn't (don't) tell people about Kirk and what happened. As soon as I do there's a huge sign posted over my head, and every time that person looks at me my features disappear and instead I'm a Situation and a Circumstance and a Reason For Pity. Ages ago I ended up telling a woman I deal with at work (she asked and asked and asked and there's only so much vague avoidance one can do before it stops being sidestepping and becomes outright lying. I don't like lying). Now every time I see her she gets a particularly wide smile on her face, tips her head to one side (right, always) and says 'how are you?' And I think, she couldn't really care less about how I am, she just likes thinking of herself as a really nice person who is terribly empathetic and that's what nice empathetic people do. Which is actually pretty nasty minded of me, but there you are.

I'm afraid too of the ease of being a victim. People are nice to you, they want to help you and do things for you. You might not have to try too hard because, poor thing, think of what you're going through. It's true of course. There are days when waking up is the hardest thing in the world, when I don't want to make those umpteen tedious changes to a page or copy edit that submission because it's trivial and pointless in the face of everything. But it still has to be done, today and tomorrow and for the rest of my life. Years from now won't that victim crown be getting a little tinny? What if I get too used to being the princess of pain and can't do things for myself anymore?

But some things I just don't feel adequate to deal with alone, and Social Security is one of those things. So I'm hoping somewhere out there is a person who can help me out. And if that means I have to be a victim today... well I suppose I can do that.

Fifteen minutes.

3 comments:

child2 said...

i hate that!

Anonymous said...

I don't suppose your colleague at work looks like Professor Umbridge by any chance, does she? Imagine her carried away by centaurs...

For Kirk said...

There's a thought... and yes, three kids means I DO get random Harry Potter references without thinking twice!