My grandmother once told me that I was the 'most spoilt person she'd ever met.' My response was, "Of course I was bloody spoilt - I'm the eldest of your grandchildren by 2 years. Do you think you contributed?" I can't remember the rest of the conversation, and it might not be verbatim, and as we know with memory, it may not have happened at all.
But I am. Selfish. Selfish to the core. I try not to be. I try to be unselfish and care about others. I really do.
I buy people things. I do what they want, without complaining (to them at least) when I really don't just want to sit there and do nothing. I ensure that other people have fun wherever we are, to the point it annoys me. I devote my time to my friends and students.
But, emotionally, I'm mine. I don't get worked up about things that don't affect me, or at least annoy me. I don't consider other people's emotions, and often tune out when they are speaking to me. I expect of course that they listen to every single thing I say.
I feel sorry for the people who have been involved in the floods. (BTW, I know that Australia is large and tell people that. Do people overseas understand it now, when a third of our state is the same size and France and Germany combined???) I really do. They've lost their livelihoods, pets, friends, homes and memories. My heart goes out to them and I've donated. But. And here's the thing. I am only worried how it affects me.
Am I going to be able to get out there on the weekend? It's looking less and less likely.
Are the students going to be at school the week after next?
Am I going to have to do clean up when I get out there?
I don't want other people to suffer, but I'm thinking solely of me. Me.
Like the prayers going around the Australian blogosphere for Lori and her Husband. He died today. Don't now why, but am really curious. When the news came that he was in the ICU, I sent a quick prayer and read everyone's blogs about it. I wanted information.
I was sympathetic. I felt bad for her and wanted the family to be safe, healthy and happy. But I didn't really care. I was grateful that it wasn't me going through that. I said thank you, sent a quick, "Please help them get through this" and went on my own merry way.
And if being emotionally cut off from sympathy, empathy and caring aren't examples of pure selfishness, I don't know what is. I feel guilty. I am working on 'passing it up' - sending it to the Angels to help remove from my personality. To be more caring for my fellow citizens in the world and online.
Please forgive me.