Friday, June 27, 2008

Competition

I have a weird relationship with one of my cousins. For as long as I can remember, we have always competed with one another. As a child, I was motivated to get straight A's, because I knew that my cousin could never accomplish this feat. And she bragged about all of her fashionable clothes, because she knew that my family could never afford them.

Although it was a horrible part of our relationship, we have managed to keep this horrible tradition alive. To this day, we still compete about nearly everything. We even compete about things that aren't desirable - like who is more sleep deprived or who has the worst luck. It is ridiculous.

Anyways, my cousin is trying to buy a house in a very ritzy area in northern Kentucky. Honestly, I was happy to hear about her move, because her current neighborhood is going into the shitter (there are open drug transactions, people partying all night, etc.). She has two young children, and I want them to grow up in a healthy environment.

Last week, my cousin called to tell me that their home loan didn't go through - they have too many liabilities (own a small business, car payments, student loans, home equity loan, etc.). She was heartbroken. I felt really bad for her. She said something along the lines of , "Every time I really want something to happen, it doesn't happen." I told her that I completely understood how she felt.

Instead of accepting my sympathy, she got very defensive with me. She asked me how I could possibly understand how she felt. I was taken aback by her comment and sat in silence for a moment. She proceeded to tell me that I have everything I want - a happy marriage, a college degree, a home on the east coast, and two sweet babies. And she is completely right.

The thing that pissed me off was her attitude. She acted like everything was given to me, with no trials or tribulations along the way. I have worked EXTREMELY HARD to get to the place where I am. Although it was tempting, I almost started a discussion on whose life has been harder. But by doing that, I would simply be continuing our ignorant competition. So, for the first time in my life, I let it go. I let her win.

I think I am finally over it. I am secure enough in my own life, that I don't need to compete with her anymore.

17 comments:

Jenn said...

That's good, I find most girls tend to do this,I'll call my best friend and yap about how I haven't slept in weeks and she will start right in on how her kids won't shut up or whatever.I'm sure I do the same thing too. Maybe she sounded so snotty because she was just so upset and felt she could let it out with you and not really with anyone else not thinking how it might make you feel by what she was saying.

Z's Mom said...

She didn't win...you did! You came out of that conversation looking better than she did...and she knows it too! She's feeling bad things didn't go her way and unfortunately, she feels comfortable enough with you to take it out on you.

BTW....LOVE your new blog look! I love it love it love it!!! It looks very summery and fresh!!! :)

The Woman said...

I agree you came out on top, she was being a little nitpicky after not getting what she wanted and now is somehow blaming you.

Heather at A Boy, A Girl, & A Pug said...

Hey, she sounds like my sister in law! Maybe we are related after all:)

Good for you for stopping it right there. At least for today.

But she is right though, you do have 2 sweet babies:) Shame on you:)

THopgood said...

OMG...I can so relate...I have the same kind of relationship with a cousin also. I feel like no matter what comes out of my mouth she is constantly "one upping" me. When we talk on the phone I can barely get a word in edgewise...it's frustrating...I gave up on that relationship a while ago and only speak to her sporadically now because I just couldn't stand the competition any more.

Marni Tiani Self said...

Good for you.

I just have to know about your layout too. Did Mary do it? It's fancy fancy. I LOVE it!!

Colleen said...

That sucks...you're right - I'm sure you worked very hard to have all the things you have! Too bad that it had to be an argument with a friend/relative that you seem to be relatively close with. I'm sure part of it was just her frustration at her own situation!

amanda said...

pretty sure you won sister.

high five for taking the high road. even though it sucks :)

btw - simply love the new look! its very fun!!

TEACHBROECK said...

WOW great new look...I have had the same generic look since day one...no idea how to change it ha!

Tabitha said...

Good on you!! You did the right thing by just letting her win.

I absolutely love your new look blog. I have wanted to change mine for ages and don't want any of the blogger templates ~ did you get someone to do it for you? I want a change and this has made me decide I would like something different!! Yours looks just great!!
love and hugs ~ Tabitha XXX

Eva said...

Very mature. It's hard to break cycles.

Melain said...

Congratulations. Childhood rivalries usually follow us to the grave. It's amazing that you conquered it so young. Though I do pose a quesion: Would it be as easy to let go of the competition if you WEREN'T winning? Hmmmm...

Anth said...

Congratulations! When I respond in a mature fashion to someone else's retardedness, I feel like such an adult. It feels nice. And I hope you felt all mature and awesome too!

Sugar&Ice said...

You definitely came out ahead on this one. The one-upping is sort of hard to get away from, especially when you've done it with this person your entire life. Congrats to you for being the mature one.

Misguided Mommy said...

can i just tell you how happy i am to not be the only one with this same problem. it's even with my cousin. how odd.

Rachel said...

Sounds like she is jealous of you even though you worked really hard. I hate stinky stuff like that. It leaves bad tastes in my mouth. You were just trying to be nice and I am sure you feel that things don't go your way either. We all feel that at times. I am sorry for the conversation.

Tracey said...

Good girl. Acknowledging it is the first step. Breaking it will be a continuing step. I hope she gets a new chance at a better location.