Little Victories: how am I not jealous right now?

I have a history of being jealous. It’s not the sort of thing that’s cool to admit. Because jealousy is really petty and everyone knows it. Also, everyone knows it means you’re insecure. People who are secure do not feel jealous. They feel supportive and happy. Their neighbor wins the $389,000,000 lottery? Good for them! We’re planting a new garden!

That was based on my mom. She is the least jealous person ever, and she loves to garden.

(source)

Clearly, I am not very secure. I mean, clearly.

I’m working on it.

For a while, whenever I went to my writing group, I got jealous. We’d all show up, being fabulous and wearing interesting shoes, preening a little. And we’d report on our two weeks apart. Who was pitching where, getting accepted where, who had this amazing new opportunity, who had gotten this crazy gig. Quick, I thought frantically, think of something impressive you’ve done! I was deathly afraid that nothing would come to mind.

And sometimes I am so jealous I feel my smile get stuck on my face and I can hear my own voice, surprisingly squeaky, as though from a great distance, saying, “That’s great! That’s really great!” and in a second I think I might laugh like the laugh track on a bad sitcom. “Oh my god! I’m so happy for you! That’s really great! Oops! I tripped over my feet!” *laughter*

 

My jealousy is very particular. It’s reserved for people who do what I do, but are more successful at it than me. When I used to play piano competitions, as a kid, I was horribly jealous of whoever won first place. Now it’s writing. So actually, I’d be fine with someone winning the lottery/having wild success of a non-writing variety. But if one of my friends gets published in the magazine I’ve been pitching for a solid year—I might feel like crying the slightest bit. The slightest bit more than the slightest bit.

(this picture makes me a little nervous, even now.)

And I hate myself while I’m almost crying. Or almost not crying. Because this is not the kind of person I want to be. This is a shameful person who needs to get her priorities straight. Who should have priorities like:

1. Being a really good person (including calling one’s grandmother on a regular basis and donating time and money to charities that directly benefit people in need)

2. Laughing a lot, because life is short

3. Steadfastly and unflinchingly pursuing personal goals without comparing oneself to others

4. Remembering to do the laundry before ALL of the underwear is used up

5. Cardio, 45 min at a time, 3 times a week

(Ha! 45 minutes? THREE times a week?)

(Shit. I’m going to die young.)

Jealousy is a waste of time. It gets in the way and it sits there stubbornly, giving you this blank stare. It isn’t subtle. It doesn’t understand.

I am not sure how to handle it. It makes me feel tiny and irrelevant. I am suddenly the smallest knight in the world, staring up at a dragon that is big enough to blot out the sun. I am helpless.

But I am not really helpless. About a month ago, I told the other members of my writing group that I was feeling a little uncomfortable. I didn’t use the word “jealous,” because, well, then I’d sound like a baby. I said it felt competitive.

And everyone agreed. It felt competitive to them, too. It felt uncomfortable.

Phew.

(Funny what happens when you talk to people about how you’re feeling. I’m not saying it’s always gonna be good—but it’s probably worth a shot.)

I’ve been changing. I can feel it. I’m getting a little bit better at being myself. Just a little. So I can’t brag yet.

And then came the ultimate test. Yesterday, one of my closest friends got amazing news. She had been offered a blogging job at a huge site. And I mean huge. And a bigshot Hollywood agent wanted to represent her and set her up with people who would…wait for this because it is absolutely worth waiting for…MAKE A TV SHOW ABOUT HER LIFE.

(source)

A TV show. About her life.

Her life.

In a TV show.

With actors, playing her and her husband and her friends. Like me, actually. An actor playing me on a TV show about my friend’s life.

Oh, and if she wanted to do a book- then do it! A book that could be made into a movie, of course. Or a different TV show. What did she want to do? Anything she wanted was possible!

We were eating dinner at this sexy new Mexican place in Dumbo. There wasn’t much food, but it was very artistically arranged.

“I wanted to tell you in person,” she said.

“Oh, of course!” I said.

I wished that she hadn’t, because now I had to react in person. I had to somehow react to the news that this girl whose career is so similar to mine, who I met through this blog, was getting a break so unimaginably giant that I had never even thought to dream of something similar. The kind of break that writers might do a totally understandable thing like selling their soul to the devil for.

“That’s great!” I said. “That’s…so amazing!” I stared down at my plate, where a delicate fried egg swam in some unidentifiable green sauce speckled with minced herbs.  I stared at the water-beaded corona stuck in my hand. “God. That’s…really amazing.” I looked back up at her.

“It’s overwhelming, that’s what it is,” she said immediately.

Is she downplaying, because of me? I thought.

I thought, probably.

She looked worried, a little awkward. I could tell that she knew that now was the moment when I might smile my tin smile and laugh my canned laugh.

And suddenly I knew how I felt. It wasn’t flawless. I wasn’t not in any way jealous. I would love a break of that magnitude. Of course I would. I’d be terrified to do a TV show, but I’d love to sit in the high floor office of a big-deal agent and listen to him tell me how amazing I am, how I can do anything next. Anything. Of course I want that.

But also, I want that for her.

And it happened to her, not me. Right now, it is happening to her. And we need to celebrate.

We celebrated. We laughed. Like priority number 2.

I went home and waited for something else to kick in. For the darkness to kick in. The creeping sense of failure. Strangely, it didn’t come.

I woke up the next morning, and I waited. But it didn’t come.

I felt happy. For no reason.

Or maybe for a very good one.

It suddenly occurred to me that I do not have to be the one in the front. I do not have to win.

Weird. Why not? I always want to win.

I don’t know. Because it actually doesn’t matter?

And it was strangely liberating that my friend had succeeded so suddenly, at this level. Maybe because she had won, and so I didn’t need to. If that makes any sense.

Maybe because there might be a character on TV based on me someday. And even if it’s a supporting one, that’s still pretty damn cool.

I’m kidding. It’s because of her.

(source)

*   *   *

When’s the last time you were really jealous? Or really surprisingly not jealous? How do you handle jealousy?

Unroast: Today I love the way the tiny hairs just above my wrists catch the light and glow gold.

Here’s an unroast from 13-yr-old reader Nyssa: Today i love how i look when i wear my vintage belt with my swing dancng dress. <3

If you want me to share yours ever, just email it to me!

Some other posts from the Little Victories series: My breasts, Bombshell, perfect dress 

40 Responses to “Little Victories: how am I not jealous right now?”

  1. Alpana Trivedi responded on 11 Apr 2012 at 10:50 am #

    Actually, Kate, I’m a VERY jealous person. The only thing is….I ADMIT IT!!! And that’s what shocks people more. Have you ever known people who could be there for anyone’s bad times, but not for their good times? I’m one of those people. It’s like a part of me feels “There are many fair-weather friends out there. Let me be the foul-weather friend.” Not to say that “oh joy, someone’s unhappy” but I seem to find that easier to handle than someone doing well when I’m not. Don’t get me wrong. I’ve been happy for my friends. I’ve been happy for my family/relatives. But it seems that when I’m doing okay, I’m able to do that without being “jealous.” But I’m openly jealous when I DO get that way. And then, all hell breaks loose. And in some ways it’s worse, because “oh, great, Alpana’s not doing okay, so we all have to be brought down.” I think my jealousy and the “woe-is-me” pity party are very much related, because the two happen at the same time. I think I just admit it out loud so that when it’s not the case, someone isn’t going to give me that smug look and say “You’re not jealous, are you?”

  2. Maria A. responded on 11 Apr 2012 at 11:25 am #

    My jealousy soup stopped boiling a bit after I read your post. :) I’m still not ready admit my “un-victory” though (because failure makes it sound so much worse).

    I have/had a smiliar problem with a friend. For the last years I’ve been writing and improving, pitching my ideas to magazines and of course collected rejections. She took an extra master’s degree in a totally non-related field, had no experience and submitted her very first idea nearly out of nowhere – and got accepted in a big national magazine. It made me feel incredibly jealous. Not ouf of insecurity as such, but out of injustice (which I believe is pretty much the same in the end). How did she do that? Is something wrong with me? Was it beginner’s luck?

    Sadly, I have no idea how to overcome it. How to stop taking my life’s achievements so seriously. Or there’s the problem: I don’t take my other achievements serious and thus think of any outside victory as an immediate threat. It’s remarkable how flawed we humans are and yet surive :) )

    Oh well, what did Samuele Beckett say? “Try again. Fail again. Fail better.”

  3. Mandy responded on 11 Apr 2012 at 12:27 pm #

    Is jealousy the feeling that someone else’s success–especially in a field where we ourselves would like to shine–dimishes our own?
    Because I wonder, sometimes, if I don’t compare myself to others too much, instead of being happy with what I’ve accomplished.

    Kudos to you, Kate, for figuring out that you don’t have to “win!”

    Because “winning” isn’t possible–there is always someone who is doing better than you. And just think how much pressure it would be to actually be the “winner.” It would be like being the fastest gun in the West–always having to watch for the next person trying to take the title away from you!
    Guess I’m just lazy, but it sounds like too much freakin’ WORK.

  4. Kayla responded on 11 Apr 2012 at 12:33 pm #

    I really want to be IRL friends with you when you post things like this.

    One instance of jealousy that immediately springs to mind is that I have a friend, not a super close friend, but a friend that I know in real life, who writes a blog, and writes it well, and is fairly successful with it. Rather like you, only, again, I know her in real life. I’m sort of jealous of her and her blog.

    But MORE SO! every now and then she does a thing where she features blogs that she’s been reading and enjoying lately. The most recent of these included the blog of a mutual friend, a girl who is one of my best friends actually, and she only recently started her blog, but she got featured and I never have been! and I’m super jealous of this. and it’s so very silly…

  5. Valerie responded on 11 Apr 2012 at 12:45 pm #

    Honestly, I’m jealous all the time. I see people who breeze through life and everything just sort of happens to them, things that they didn’t even know they wanted to happen to them, and everyone is excited and happy and they have everything they could ever want and more.

    But then I remember that I am a work in progress and the people that are simply handed things in life (not all of the people though – some of these people actually work really, really hard to get where they’re going) will never actually know themselves or what they’re capable of or what their faults or strengths are. I would rather work hard and get millions of rejections from agents or publishers so that I push myself harder to be better than I am now than just fall into it so effortlessly that I don’t know how I got where I wanted to be and how to stay there.

  6. ladykatya responded on 11 Apr 2012 at 1:13 pm #

    I’m a horribly jealous person. Horribly, evilly, wrongly jealous.

    However… I have friends who admit they are jealous of me!

    Imagine that. Jealous. Of me?

    WHY??

    That was the strangest feeling ever. That someone… (and you know, that right there feels like bragging, and … well, is it?) is jealous of little old me. Who doesn’t write. Who isn’t famous. Who doesn’t make 8 million dollars a year…

    I think women are probably all jealous. I just don’t think a lot of us admit it. ;)

    signed –

    jealous lk. :)

  7. lik_11 responded on 11 Apr 2012 at 1:16 pm #

    My most embarrassing jealousy is over my cat. I adopted him 5 years ago… 3 years ago I got married. My cat prefers my husband, and it totally pisses me off. He was MY cat- I picked him!!! WTF?
    Petty? Yes. Can I get over it? No.

  8. Diana responded on 11 Apr 2012 at 2:04 pm #

    I am jealous of my bff from high school. She married young (got pregnant in college) and divorced him when she realized they had little in common. She married a second time, and divorced him when he wouldn’t let her into the house during her lunch-time (he had to write and didn’t want interruptions!).

    She reconnected with a high school friend on FB, called/wrote/communicated with him for 6 months, he flew cross-country to see her, AND THEY GOT MARRIED 2 DAYS LATER!!

    They are totally, head-over-heels in love with each other. Been married a year. Sold their homes. Moved. Found new jobs. Bought a fabulous big new house together (pool, outdoor bbq, mini-estate, etc). Having a baby. Loving life. Whirl-wind romance story; hard not to be jealous when you’ve had the same partner for almost 30 years.

    And a second confession: I was jealous of my friend’s brand-new, breath-taking, vertigo-induced hillside house until she told me her husband had recently lost his job. And they were selling their dream home. Now, I just feel awful for her.

    And a side to lik_11: Do you think your cat picked your husband because your kitty is just like you, meaning you picked your husband, too? Just a thought.

    I love this post. It’s so sincere and honest.

  9. Kate responded on 11 Apr 2012 at 2:29 pm #

    @Maria A
    This sounds kind of classic to me. For the life of me, I still can’t figure out exactly what magazines want. And I think that’s because often it’s pretty random. So don’t ever measure your success by whether or not a magazine has published you. Sometimes they just like a story at a particular moment, and that’s that.

  10. Kate responded on 11 Apr 2012 at 2:30 pm #

    @lik_11
    ha! I was once jealous of a little kid who toddled over to my friend instead of me. It was during a conversation about babies, in which my friend was saying that she definitely didn’t want any, ever. And then this adorable little kid comes right up to her and grins up into her face. I was like, “You’ve got to be kidding me.”

    :-)

  11. Kate responded on 11 Apr 2012 at 2:31 pm #

    @ladykatya
    WHAT?! You don’t make 8 million a year? GET OFF THIS BLOG.

    :-)

    Kidding, obviously.

    There’s always something to be jealous of. It just depends what you and your friends are looking for.

  12. Krystina responded on 11 Apr 2012 at 2:54 pm #

    I’m soo jealous of the other girls who I went to high school with, who went to college, moved out of their parents home, got married, had kids, ect. ect…. I’m still in the same town I went to high school in. Living at home with my parents. I have brain cancer. I have gained weight. Soooo not cool….Yeah, I am plenty jealous. I try not to look at their posts on Facebook so I don’t know how fabulous their life is! I’m getting better at it though. Nothin’ like cancer to clear the view you have on the world. :)

  13. Hannah responded on 11 Apr 2012 at 3:20 pm #

    I’m also a jealous person, but my jealousy tends manifests itself in grouchiness– over fear of missing out.

    “Why is so-and-so hanging out with them tonight? Am I not good enough? Oh God, I’m awful. No wonder no one wants to hang out with me. If I were like so-and-so, and I had [insert characteristic here] people would want to hang out with me. Why does she get to have it? If I had it, they would like me, but they’ll never like me because I don’t have [whatever characteristic].”

    And every once in a while I can catch myself and remind myself that this is idiocy, but until then (and let’s be honest– usually afterwards too) I sit and sulk about how I’m not worthwhile because I lack X,Y, AND Z, but so-and-so has them in abundance.

    Is that weird? That I’m jealous of personalities more often than I’m jealous of opportunities?

  14. Kate responded on 11 Apr 2012 at 3:24 pm #

    @Hannah
    Not weird. Jealousy covers all the bases. I have been known to be jealous of the way people hold themselves– so confident and comfortable!
    I mean, on occasion, when I’m not being jealous because they’re a famous writer :-)

  15. Kristine responded on 11 Apr 2012 at 3:47 pm #

    I kind of just want everyone in my life to be doing the same level of well. If someone gets a good job and I don’t, I’m genuinely happy for them, but also thinking that should happen to me too. If I have a great boyfriend I’m happy, but also thinking ok now we need to find great boyfriends for all of my friends too…

    If someone I don’t like does better than me I will think “Of everyone I know THAT is who that happens to? she doesn’t deserve that!” if I honestly think that. If the person I don’t like excels in something they are good at I’ll be more ok with it.

  16. Chrissie responded on 11 Apr 2012 at 4:22 pm #

    I am also a very jealous person and it helps to read other’s perspectives. For me, it’s over my husband. I am even jealous at times of his own family, and I know it comes from a deep routed sense of “I’m not-good-enough”. I’ve always felt like my husband was better than me. “Why did he choose me? He could have anyone” and so even his friends and family became a source of stress for me. It’s truly the green-eyed monster!

    Love your blog, by the way!

  17. Kimmy Sue Ruby Lou responded on 11 Apr 2012 at 4:25 pm #

    It is definitely about being insecure, and everyone is insecure about something…but not everyone is honest about it. I am so enjoying your evolution…it’s pretty freaking amazing to witness and participate in. We are all connected and benefit in this journey with you. Word of advice…next time someone accuses you of being self-centered, remind them that people are mirrors. It is clearly not about you in a selfish way…you are mirror for so many of us. Thank you for that! I am always excited when a friend achieves something they’ve wanted…but I do have a moment or two of reflection and inevitably ask, “well damn, what have i done lately?” then it passes…always does. Happy Wednesday Kate :)

  18. Blair responded on 11 Apr 2012 at 6:28 pm #

    Jealousy, argh. I wish we all lived in a utopia where creative types could just feed off each other’s successful energy and go on to make even more and different and cool things, but more often than not it’s definitely “uncomfortable.”

    One way I’ve found of coping (to the extent that I CAN cope) is to do the absolute best I can with projects, not letting myself half-ass it or phone it in, even though it’s really really tempting sometimes. The stuff that I’ve poured my hardest work is the stuff I let myself see the (hopefully) objective good in, and then even when compared with others’ successes, I feel like I can say (not out, necessarily!) “hey, my stuff is pretty cool TOO.”

  19. bethany actually responded on 11 Apr 2012 at 6:37 pm #

    I realize that the point of this post is that you were NOT jealous of your friend’s success, but I had this thought: “Dude, you’re looking at it the wrong way. This person who got this amazing blogging job, who might get a TV show made that is based on her life?…she wants to be YOUR friend! YOU are interesting and fun and wonderful enough that someone that successful and interesting wants to be friends with YOU!”

    :-)

  20. Kate responded on 11 Apr 2012 at 6:42 pm #

    @bethany actually
    LOL! You’re totally right.

  21. Sooz responded on 11 Apr 2012 at 7:05 pm #

    I’m usually jealous of other women and the amount of attention they get or how much more beautiful they are compared to me. Ridiculous. I know. But I always cast myself in the ugly fatty role when compared to ANY other women. Super ridiculous. Also, I don’t like it when a woman notices my husband in a certain way or when he checks out other women in any way (he’s usually pretty subtle but still). I grew up being told I was ugly and fat and stupid. So my insecurities are deep rooted. But I know this about myself. And I consciously work on not allowing the jealous voices take over and ruin my days. I’m pretty good at it now. But sometimes I wish it came more naturally. :)

  22. Jay responded on 11 Apr 2012 at 8:18 pm #

    I loved the list of priorities.

  23. Kate responded on 11 Apr 2012 at 8:19 pm #

    @Jay
    Thank you.

  24. Val responded on 12 Apr 2012 at 1:14 am #

    Kate, I use two different words–envious and jealous–to describe the difference.

    Envious is just envious–but it’s different from jealousy. Jealousy feels more fed, bigger and darker.

    But I’m often envious a bit–I wish no harm whatsoever to the lucky person. I am sincerely happy.

    Jealousy is like you win, I lose.

    Envy is like you win, and I want us to both win.

    See what I mean?

    It took me a long time, long, long time, to accept that I’m different, my life is different, the things I care about and want aren’t the same things other people desire, and to be at peace with that.

    I felt like I should shape up and be normal.

    Pah, normal is overrated.

    Nothing is wrong with them or me, we’re all fine.

    Life is confusing, and this I do know. Thanks for talking about the weird and confusing and difficult parts. I appreciate it more than you know.

    love, Val

  25. morgaine responded on 12 Apr 2012 at 1:36 am #

    The distinction I learned is that envy is desire for what someone else has, and jealousy is fear that someone else wants what you have. Jealousy, I think, is much more destructive, because it breeds paranoia in a way that envy doesn’t.

    I’m more jealous than envious. I’m generally good at not coveting that of others; what keeps me up at night is the idea that *they* are coveting something of *mine.* If it was never mine to begin with, I don’t worry about it, but once I have something, I guard it with my life. This hasn’t exactly served me well: I’ve wrongly accused friends of wanting my boyfriends, and every time I land a role in a play, I literally stay up worrying that I’ll be replaced. I’m very, very glad I’m not in a particularly competitive field (I’m a Latin literature student); otherwise, I could easily pull a Nina Sayers.

  26. Crystal responded on 12 Apr 2012 at 1:57 am #

    Just wanted to say hi and that I love your blog – so much that I have added you to my “Blogging Friends” page as one of my must read blogs :)

  27. Suzy Marie responded on 12 Apr 2012 at 5:41 am #

    I get jealous a lot, but if I think about it, I have no problem being really happy for the other person, but I do get sad about myself. I think that’s what jealousy is really, it’s not a negative feeling about another person (for me anyway), it’s negativity towards yourself.

    I am completely jealous of my boyfriend’s sister, which is a bit annoying since I see her frequently. She’s just insanely beautiful and wears amazing clothes and has cool hair, and I feel completely insignificant every time I’m with her. Maybe I should start un-roasting?!

    It’s great that you’ve gotten over your feelings of jealousy, and totally awesome that you’re going to be played by an actor on a tv show!

  28. Rapunzel responded on 12 Apr 2012 at 10:09 am #

    I am always jealous. It’s probably my biggest character flaw because it leads to the rest of my feelings, like resentment and anger and sadness. It’s kind of a coincidence you wrote this because I was just thinking about what a jealous person I am the day before yesterday.

    I don’t know how it happened, but I’ve suddenly become materialistic over the past few years (can “suddenly” happen over the course of years?). It’s kind of disconcerting, but not a huge deal. Everyone’s materialistic sometimes. When I see that Kitchenaid mixer or that nice new car, I just WANT it. And when someone else has one, I’m just plain jealous. I’m not happy that they have it and that I don’t, I’m just jealous and then I can’t possibly like that person. I have an really hard time with this on all the DIY blogs I surf through–it’s made me believe that I can never have my own DIY blog about my house unless I live in a big beautiful house or a really adorable on-the-cover-of-Country-Living cottage. And I’m jealous of every one of them because, most likely, my husband and I will never make enough money to have houses like that. How shallow am I? I disgust myself sometimes.

    What’s the worst worst worst jealousy for me though–one that I live with day in and day out every single day of my life–is [and I'm saying this quite shamefully]–thin people. More specifically, thin people who don’t have to try to be thin; thin people who have never been fat so they haven’t BEEN THERE; thin people who can do whatever they want because they are automatically fit; thin people who can eat whatever they want because their bodies decide that their metabolism is the new evolutionary step. I loathe them, with pure jealousy. And it feels like an unstoppable force that plagues me every time I step outside, go on the internet, turn on the tv, or even open a damn book. Sometimes it feels like I can’t handle it. I fume over it for inordinate amounts of time because the thing that really grates on me is their obliviousness. They’re the same people who whine about their thighs when their thighs are long and beautiful and firm, not wide and jiggly like mine. They’re the people who have never “had to go on a diet” before in their lives so they don’t know what a huge struggle it is, which makes me believe that they judge those of us who DO struggle and they can’t figure out why we aren’t successful at dieting; because, afterall, >being thin is easy< for someone like that. See where this takes me? I judge people because I assume that they judge people. It's just not right!

    I *did* notice though that my jealous feelings are only directed towards strangers. I know people with kitchenaid mixers and nice cars, and if that person is nice then I don't hate them. I know thin, beautiful people who don't have to try to be that way and I don't hate them. Maybe I really just need to get to know everyone and then I won't be jealous of them unless they're assholes.

    Wow, I sound like such a brat.

  29. margosita responded on 12 Apr 2012 at 10:14 am #

    I’m definitely a jealous person. It’s really hard not to be, especially with only one life and so many interesting paths to take! I am often (so often!) jealous of others’ writing successes, but when someone is traveling the world and blogging I feel jealous, or rocking a good outfit I feel jealous or when they are generally not having to worry about what I have to worry about I feel jealous.

    Like, “Their problems are way better than my problems!”

    It will still eat me up, occasionally. But I’ve found it immensely valuable that I no longer give myself a hard time about it. And I try hard to remind myself that I can be both happy for someone AND totally jealous. It’s not mutually exclusive. I also find it helpful to tell my friends when I’m jealous of them. Because then it’s not an ugly festering thing between us. I think jealousy thrives in the dark, so even owning up to it makes it less powerful. Much like you’re doing here!

    And for the record, I’m jealous of your blogging success! So you’ve always got that ;)

  30. San D responded on 12 Apr 2012 at 10:15 am #

    I have a humorous way of dealing with my jealousy, such that it is. I always say “yeah, well, can she/he throw on the potter’s wheel… I think NOT”. Basically what this means is that I pick something I am good at (and know it, hee hee), and add that to my feelings about the other person’s triumphs. I honestly never try to rain on anyone else’s parade, but like all human beings am affected by the “green eyed monster” every once in awhile.

  31. Inelegant Life responded on 12 Apr 2012 at 6:57 pm #

    I am jealous of most other mothers. Because I don’t like being a mom. Because I rarely have those, “Being a mom is the most wonderful thing that’s ever happened in my life” moments. I’m jealous of moms who miss their kids when they’re away. Mine can go away for two weeks, and I might feel a twinge here and there, but I’m not falling apart at the seams over it. I’m jealous of moms whose kids excel, because although I know my kids could excel, they mostly choose not to. I’m jealous of moms whose kids like to read – because despite reading to all of mine, always having books around, going to the library, etc., not one of them loves reading. So, I’m jealous, A LOT.

  32. littlebrowniexD responded on 13 Apr 2012 at 12:23 am #

    Yay you mentioned me!! This made my day <3
    im frequently uber jealous of people. i try and try so hard to just not think about it but always in the end i am "seeing green" again.
    i always get jealous of girls me age who are pretty and skinny or unfairly curvey.
    But thats just me. Thanks for posting!!!! :D

  33. LadyGrey responded on 14 Apr 2012 at 7:37 pm #

    Sometimes it overwhelms me. Jealousy that is. And sometimes I can suppress it. But its always there. Eventually I get over being jealous. Like now. I’m just waiting :)

  34. Madeline responded on 15 Apr 2012 at 3:47 am #

    It’s a tough deal. From the other side of the coin, when people are jealous, the other person *can* feel it. Whether it’s subtle cues in their body language, or the way they look at you, or offhanded comments. And it can be pretty hurtful.

    Or it’s revealed in the way they don’t reply, if you email them sharing some good news that has just happened to you.

    I’ve recently had some personal successes, and I feel like I don’t want to share them publicly, because I have felt jealousy from some people I did share it with. It hurt because I had anticipated that others might be happy for me.

    I’m glad you addressed the competitive atmosphere in your writing group. There’s this mentality that there’s only so much to go around, there can only be ONE good, talented, successful person. When in truth there’s so many possibilities for everyone, and certain things may come to you in their own time and way.

    Of course I have moments when I hear that other people have the stuff that I’d like to have, I think, oh, I want that stuff too. But what helps me is remembering that we’re all on our own paths, on our own timeframes, and there’s more than enough to go around for everyone. And being grateful for all the wonderful things that are here right now.

  35. Gracey responded on 15 Apr 2012 at 8:55 am #

    Long time lurker, first time poster here :)

    I just wanted to say that I’m NOT a jealous person. So when jealousy pops up for me I’ve learned to read it as a big massive signpost telling me that I really want something.

    When I was younger my boyfriend’s best friend and his girlfriend would come round and we’d hang out- they were all *very* musical and played music together while I watched, being able to sing to not to play an instrument well enough to jam with them. I remember having a massive sulk- at the time I rationalised it as being bored, or being jealous that I wasn’t getting my boyfriend’s attention (I was only 14!) But later I realised what it was- jealousy not of the attention but of the musical ability. I WANTED to be able to jam and play with people, I WANTED desperately to be good enough to join in and share. Until that moment I didn’t think I had a particular desire to play an instrument. I thought I was happy as a singer. So after a few years searching I took up mandolin, put in the hours and now when they come round I can play with them and with other people too!

    I also find jealousy can hide as irritation- some of my friends are swing dancers and when we go to gigs and clubs they usually have a few dances. It always made me irrationally angry at them for “showing off.” But you know what, that was JEALOUSY. I desperately wanted to be able to dance like that. So you know what, I got my ass down to some classes and I’m learning. I’m nowhere near that good, and don’t expect to be for many years, but jealousy guided me to find my passions. And it keeps me practising, when I watch others on the dance floor absolutely green with envy for their grace and rhythm.

    Jealousy makes a good signpost, and it can make good fuel if it’s used positively.

  36. Farida responded on 15 Apr 2012 at 10:50 am #

    I Hate Jealousy ! I like your mom’s attitude and I DO it all the time, I just felt it one time, when my friend was telling me that she is pregnant , so I thought y not me? BUT I REALIZED that this WAS medicine effect !
    and thank God i stopped this drug!

    Y u feel jealous ? you are so talented ! I love your writing , how its smooth and friendly , keep on !

  37. Tianna responded on 15 Apr 2012 at 9:03 pm #

    You are seriously an amazing writer! I come on here every day hoping for a new post! My not jealous moment: When I discovered this blog. Usually I hate when people have very successful blogs because I am just beginning and experimenting with my own but I actually see why this one is so well-read :)

  38. Kate responded on 17 Apr 2012 at 9:40 am #

    @Gracey
    I like the way you look at this. Jealousy as a signpost. Maybe it’s OK to acknowledge the jealousy, like “I obviously care about this.” And then move on.
    Thanks for the comment!

  39. Kate responded on 17 Apr 2012 at 9:43 am #

    @Tianna
    Hey, thanks! That’s so sweet.
    And girl, I hear you. When I started blogging, I was always jealous of bigger bloggers. What helped me was reminding myself that I am a writer with a blog, and no matter what happens here, whether people read my posts or not, I’m going to write because I love to write. I don’t know if you feel that way, too. But if you do, remind yourself that it’s about the writing, not the numbers!
    And if you keep writing well, people usually find you eventually.

  40. Eat the Damn Cake » little victories: the kind of beauty that stands out in a crowd responded on 17 May 2012 at 12:57 pm #

    [...] Other posts in the Little Victories series include “how am I not jealous right now?”, “asking for a raise“, and “my [...]