Let me start by saying I have a great life. I'm not trying to brag - but life is good at the Armstrong house. My husband and I are so alike it's scary - we can already know what the other's thinking with the slightest indication (hint- it usually involves food). I have, what I consider, the cutest and smartest dog in the world who hasn't torn up our adorable, centrally located downtown Colorado Springs house. Blah blah blah sunshine and rainbows blah blah blah - you get my point.
So let me paint you a picture (you can imagine me sprinkling some fairy dust and wiggling my fingers - I know I did)....I'm going about my day, perfectly content with my life. Until suddenly I get an email. It's from a good friend of mine letting me know that another good friend of mine is pregnant. This has been happening quite often lately - more often than not it comes in the form of a facebook status update or picture of what can only be an xray squirrel inside a brown bag (or a sonogram) posted on a facebook wall. Each time I hear the news something MAGICAL happens (cue the dust and finger wiggling again). My brain starts to lose all functions resembling rationality and reason and my eyes start to morph from their lovely chocolate brown color to bright green. No, I'm not becoming the hulk - if I had those kinds of powers I wouldn't be working a desk job, posting blogs all the time - IT'D BE CLOBBERIN TIME (wrong superhero? deal with it). I instead become the incredibly annoying, completely rude and ungrateful version of myself called Jealous Leah.
Who is Jealous Leah? She's the version of myself that forgets my husband is in grad school and that we couldn't afford a baby if we wanted one (which we DON'T). She completely disregards years of friendships over the 20 pounds her old classmate lost and jumps straight to pure loathing. She wants to burn every cute outfit, mutilate every adorable hair cut, steal every awesome idea and leave a trail of bloody blogs so the only cute, adorable and awesome things in the world belong to her.
Once the rage inside me cools (and my eyes turn back to brown) - I can usually remind myself of the ways I'm fortunate and muster up something that looks like excitement for my friends. Yet I can never really stop my knee-jerk reaction of jealousy. I can cover it up with a smile, I can avert my rolling eyes or I can give an empty "Congratulations!" without adding the desired "..you jerk" at the end. No matter how hard I try - that need to feel superior (and jealousy when I don't feel superior) is always there. Waiting for a moment of weakness to peek out and hurt someone I genuinely care about.
Sometimes I rationalize things. I tell myself the person is an idiot for getting pregnant at 23 (you're not!), that whatever cute picture was taken isn't so cute (it is!) or that 20 pounds isn't that big of a deal (it.totally.is). Why do I have this need to be better than my friends? Why do I continually fail at finding joy in others accomplishments (case in point my relationship with my brother)?
As usual, I don't have the answers. Even if I did - they'd be meaningless unless put in to action. Call it my broken, human nature, call it a mean streak, call it a genetic mutation that magically (fingers and dust, fingers and dust) turns me green and raging - but jealousy runs in my blood.
I am jealous. I am working on it - one bit tongue at a time. I am using CLOBBERIN TIME in more conversations.