This great post called An Open Letter to People Who Judge My Single, Post-College Lifestyle from Timothy McSweeney’s Open Letter website expresses exactly the way I feel about living life in Ottawa. Living in this city is uber frustrating for a single gal still living a super social life.
Unless you’ve got kids, a house and mountains of responsibility, those that do tend to look down their noses a bit or worse, they express their joy at your ability to be so ‘frivolous’ and they ‘live vicariously’ through you.
I work hard and I play hard and I’m entitled to live my life the way I want to, thanks. Just sayin’.
Well, for someone that complains about not having enough to do, I sure know how to neglect the things I do like to do. It’s been a couple of months since the last time I told some tales and it’s high time I checked in. So here goes…
I feel like I’ve spent the last year of my life waiting for my life to start. I’ve been on a short-term contract with a crown corp working on a website redesign/migration project involving SharePoint 2010 since August of last year. For someone like me, being on a contract means I’ve always got to be looking for the next-best-thing. I’m never quite committed to what’s right in front of me because I’m always thinking about what’s next.
So, I’ve been openly on the prowl for the perfect position. Since I live in a city I find mediocre at best, it does nothing but reinforce my gigantic ego when I get attention from what I consider to be some of the hottest private-sector ass in this tiny town. However, when every dalliance ends with a handshake rather than a proposal it does get rather discouraging.
I’ve tried to embrace my Ottawa life, but every time I did, I found myself looking over it’s proverbial shoulder at what maybe, possibly, might be my very own next-best-thing. But I still haven’t found what I’m looking for.
And, instead of continuing to look for the best job in this mediocre town, I’ve been toying with the idea of leaving our oh-so-socially conservative capital to go swim with the sharks in the ocean of marketing opportunity that is TO.
But it’s a big step. When I left London, I left for a lot of reasons. One of the biggest was that something was missing from my relationship with that town. I had a great career, a spectacular social life, and some incredible friends that I have great affection for. But I still wanted more. Despite all London had to offer, it just wasn’t enough. I realised what was missing was sharing my joy and my experiences with the people I love most in the world – my family. So, I left London behind.
But being in Canada hasn’t quite worked out the way I wanted it. In some ways, it’s better: I’m currently closer to my family than I’ve ever been in my life (geographically and emotionally), I got a lap-band and am slowly but surely shedding the pounds I’ve been carrying with me around the world for two decades, and I’ve got some pretty fantastic peeps that keep me entertained (a little less frequently than I would like but it’s probably better for my bank account anyway!).
I guess the point is, despite my previous protests and a very obvious opportunity to indeed ride off into the sunset, I’m not quite ready to break up with my Ottawa life just yet. I think I might just need to focus on what’s important and really commit to it. So, this is my commitment to myself to have an open mind, focus on the best things and start planning some things to look forward to that I couldn’t do living in London or swimming with the sharks in TO.
I do love the fellas. I especially love the hot fellas that happen to be my friends from back home. And when I say hot, I mean smokin’ hot guys that have abs for days and guns I just want wrapped around me for the rest of my life. They would most certainly give The Situation and his ab-tastic physique a run for his money. And unlike The Situation, they’re not meatheads and they’re super nice guys so of course its always been a pleasure to be one of their friends.
It’s probably the most fun I’ve had in quite some time. Over the course of a couple days I did a lot of thinking. I thought a lot about how much fun it is to hang with a group of male friends. I’ve always had lots of ‘em (junior high, high school, university, Munich and London). Some of my best friends have been/are guys. It’s been great. Sadly, I’m lacking a pack here in O-Town.
For the better part of my life, I’ve had purely platonic but fairly intimate friendships with quite a few attractive guys. They’ve inadvertently acted as a boyfriend substitute and allowed me to avoid taking A LOT of relationship risks. They filled the void and didn’t even know it.
Substitutes like this make it oh so easy to be single. Why, when I’m surrounded by super hot, super nice guys would I want to take any risks and ruin it by hitting on one of them? I mean, I’ve always wanted a relationship but I wasn’t ever really willing to give up anything to get one. Be that friendship, time, space or pride.
And I guess I’m lying a little. Some of my platonic relationships with men have started off with me having a crush on them. And instead of going for it, I take us to the friend-zone and bury any chance of a romantic relationship. I do this because this way, they can’t reject me on the basis of my over-sized lady lumps, I won’t get hurt and I still get to have them in my life.
Despite my physical and mental transformation over the last 14 months, I’m still repeating the same mistakes I did before. I’m getting what seems like a bit more attention from the fellas (or maybe I’m just more aware of it?) but I’d still rather be just friends with lots of hot guys, rather than let any of them know I might actually be a bit more attracted to or care a bit more about them than I let on.
I’m consistently aloof and internally continue to focus on the Curse of Curves. Frankly, I still believe it to be true. Why would guys like them, ever consider someone like me…Even if I did sacrifice my pride and crawl out on that limb to reach for the relationship I really want, I still can’t believe it’s worth the risk of them rejecting me and disappearing from my life.
It’s so frustrating and absolutely paralyzing to know full well that I’m the reason I’m in this position – single, lonely and wishing I had more male friends to act as crutches in my life. I know how pathetic it is to wish for a crutch rather than wish for a relationship. But to get myself to the point where I could even consider that I’m worthy has been and will continue to be my biggest challenge in my weight loss journey.
At this point, I feel it’s very important to note that I have a beautiful group of girlfriends here in Ottawa that love me and try to change my mind about my aversion to dating on a fairly regular basis. But I just need some boy time now and then and if friendship is how I’m gonna get it, I’ll take what I can get.
See, I’m a girls’ girl and a guy’s best friend. And it has its pros and cons. But really, I deserve more than that. I deserve to be more than just a really great friend. I deserve to have someone love me for me and I deserve to have them treat me as well as I treat my friends. I just need to get out of my own way to have it and be confident enough to put myself out there. So, I’m working on it. I’m going to try to be a bit more clear about my intentions. I’ll keep you posted.
A little off-topic (OT) but…
So, I’ve been getting some shi-I mean, feedback from my friends about my (harsh) comments about my life in O-Town. To summarize:
It has been suggested that perhaps I should try not to surround myself with families so much and that I need some single friends in the city. This is true. I only have 2 single friends here. Literally every other friend I have here is either in a relationship, married, flipping a house, having babies or all of the above. Ottawa is absolutely fabulous for that kind of thing! I’d love it in a second if that’s where I was in my life. But I’m not. Yet.
It’s been suggested that I should move to TO or some other larger city in Canada. This is the truest of the true. Ultimately, this is my goal. However, I need to find a job to fund the journey elsewhere. I’m also not too keen on moving away from every single member of my family to somewhere across the country. After all, I did move back to Canada to be closer to my family.
It’s also been suggested that each city is what one makes of it. This is also true. Since I don’t have much money I haven’t really been able to make my experience here my own. I am now vowing that this shall change when I get a job.
In fact, I found this super awesome exhibition at the National Gallery of Canada that I definitely have to hit when I’ve got some dosh. It even came all the way from LONDON!! Yayyyyy!! It’s called Pop Life: Art in a Material World and I positively pumped to see it.
So, I’m hoping I’m wrong about living in capital and when I get a job I will test that theory. Until then, I’m a grumpy girl missing my city life.
So, I pondered my little predicament over the last couple of days and I really am truely tired of this city. At first I thought it might be simply my lack of employment and general purpose in this imperfect society or perhaps my inability to chew away the pain, but the more I think about living my life in this small town city, the more I realise that ultimately, it’s not what I want.
Even if by some stroke of good fortune I find myself in the job of my Ottawa dreams I’m not sure it will be enough. A lack of consistent income has meant a steady increase in my debt-load which, quite frankly, I’m already struggling to cart around. So, any money I might make certainly won’t be the solution to my sorrows.
I’ve already got my family here and I’ve got some lovely friends. It’s just that I’m so BORED I honestly don’t know what to do with myself. And my priorities are simply NOT the same as most of O-town’s residents. It’s a LOVELY city if you want to own a house or you’ve got a family and plan to raise kiddies. But as everyone knows, little Baby Mac’s are NOT in my future.
Consider me the Carrie of my friends only a little less promiscuous and considerably less fashionable (and currently Mr Big-less). Speaking of which, I saw SATC2 and despite the critics’ condemnation, I quite loved it. It was a pretty simple story and a lot of the attire was ridiculous at best but it was a fun film nonetheless. And it made me miss London. A lot.
I don’t want to go backwards so I’m not going back to The Big Smoke (unless I’m visiting) but I really gotta get the hells outta Dodge. Where’s a bad man with a horse and a big sack of bills when you need one?
Okay, it’s really been one hell of a week. In the past 7 days I’ve driven back and forth from Lindsay to Ottawa in 24 hours to move my brother and sister-in-law to town, had my first fill, realised I’m not at all restricted, drove to Toronto and back in 24 hours to see DMB, and now I’ve just found out that I’ve no longer got the financial safety net I’ve enjoyed since my surgery.
To say I’m stressed would be an understatement. I’m overwhelmed with a frustration I haven’t felt since Tantrum Tuesday. I was discussing my dismay with my Aunt this evening and her suggestion was to get drunk. Oh, how I’d love to be drowning my sorrows sipping on a super sized glass of my favourite vino rosa. But since I’ve got no money, I can’t drink.
And since I’ve got this effing band, I can’t resort to what I’d normally do when I find myself in a stressful situation such as this: stuff my face til I’m so full, the only pain I feel is my waistband digging into my big fat belly!
Well, I could go for the binge and test another boundary but only if I want to end up barfing which will neither solve my financial problems (food wastage is not smart when you don’t know where you’re next dime is coming from…and what if my band slipped??) nor numb the heartache and suffering my endless job hunting is causing. It’s just pointless to even try. But I want to, and bad.
And to be completely honest, I actually HATE living in Ottawa so that really doesn’t help the situation. Yeah, it’s a pretty city and my family lives here but it’s boring as EFF for a single woman such as myself that happens to be used to living life to the fullest in one of the world’s greatest cities. There’s really NOTHING cool about living here when you’re a chic city girl like moi. I’ve tried to keep an open mind but it just doesn’t measure up to what I’ve seen and done and the tradeoffs are starting to lose their lustre.
I don’t care if it makes me sound like a snob but I don’t actually know how people LIVE like this. I honestly feel like Reese Witherspoon in Sweet Home Alabama only I’m absolutely certain I’m not going to experience the awakening she feels where she remembers where she came from and decides Hicktown, USA ain’t so bad. Ottawa certainly isn’t a hick town but I want way too much more for myself, my life and my career than what Ottawa currently has to offer.
And the worst part is, I can’t get out of here until I get a job. I just feel so trapped!! I can see where I want to go but I just can’t get there. I want out of this box.
I recently got an email from a Random Reader that struck a chord with me. She was asking my advice on how to cope with a food-focused family event no more than two, count ’em, two days after surgery without actually spilling the beans on getting the band.
Naturally, I was surprised that one wouldn’t tell one’s family about their lap-band journey especially since I find it so easy to dish all the dirty details for the public to see. I actually received an email from an old university friend complimenting me on that very thing that makes blogging about my band work for me – my openness. But there are people who simply don’t want anyone else involved in their journey and this Random Reader is one of them.
I can totally understand why she wouldn’t want to tell the whole tale to her family members…
I didn’t dare tell anyone other than my family (but only because they helped me pay for it) that I was getting a band until the night before my surgery. I announced this blog on my Facebook page and let the whole world know hours before the main event. I kept it quiet for the very same reasons as my random reader: I didn’t want to hear all the reasons why I shouldn’t do it.
Sadly, I’ve heard too many tales of loved ones lecturing overweight family members about losing weight but only doing so on their terms and when it’s convenient for them, not when it’s convenient for the overweight person. OR they only want them to lose the weight in a way they approve of. It’s usually covert and unconscious sabotage but it’s sabotage nonetheless.
And everyone seems to become an expert on these things. All of a sudden, they think they know the best way for you to do it. I have friends that are doctors, lawyers, med students, nurses etc and they all would have had something to say about my choice. It may not have been negative but I couldn’t take the risk because some people even consider it an easy way out. It AIN’T easy let me tell you!!!!
But I AM glad they know. It helps in a lot of ways. In my family, if they didn’t know, everyone around me would be overeating or eating unhealthy foods and the temptation would be raging right in front of me.
The band doesn’t make it impossible to eat unhealthy foods, it makes it impossible to overeat unhealthy foods. There are ways around eating with the band and if I don’t address the issues, I could end up overeating again. And if you’re a pleaser, one might try to eat unhealthy foods or over eat simply because it’s easier than listening to the comments from the peanut gallery.
If everyone knows, they won’t question my small portions either. Otherwise, they’d notice my all of a sudden eating portions that are far smaller than my smaller family members’ and also what they’re used to seeing me chow down on a regular basis. When the overweight family member eats less than the average weight family member, the average weight family member will most certainly have something to say about it.
This is as much about families making a change as it is about us. What Bandsters need is support, not criticism. Positive influence around as often as possible. One doesn’t need food triggers to make them want to eat poorly.
So, to me, it’s not really about whether or not you’re open about these things. I can sort of understand how Random Reader feels. I don’t want ANYONE to comment on what I’m eating EVER – good or bad. They have no right to get involved. It’s my body, my process, my results. And that’s how I felt when Dr Yau told me I would need my family’s support. I thought, I can handle this myself. I got here, I’ll get myself out of here. But it’s not really about that. It’s about realizing that my friends and family love me and they’re there to support me – whether I want it or not.
Personally, I sat them down and told them what I needed from them and asked if they could it. In my case, they’re all full of opinions and believe themselves to be better than doctors but it’s better having them know. That way, when I say I can’t eat somewhere or eat something, they understand I’m not just being snobby or picky (which I kind of am sometimes). It’s that I actually can’t eat food from the establishment they wish to frequent.
The things is, our minds will change because they have to adapt to what’s happening to our bodies. Their (ie family, friends) minds will take longer to adjust to the new us: The one that doesn’t eat all the goodies. The one that’s not always up for a tasty snack or a drink or whatever got us to where we are. We’ve lived our lives the same way for years and the change will be sudden and obvious to others because they haven’t had the chance to adjust and to think it over like we have.
But basically, they’ll figure it out eventually. Postponing the inevitable may lead to some hurt feelings from friends and family but we’ve got to do what works best for our recovery. If that means keeping things under our hats, then so be it. But my experience has been full of love and support and very little criticism and I’m grateful for that. I wish the same to any potential bandster.
Had an interesting day. My (not so) little bro moved to town this weekend so I’ve been spending a fair bit of time with him. It’s interesting to see him as an adult. Since I was living abroad for so long I never really got to see him grow up. I probably spent 8 weeks worth of time with him in as many years. He managed to get engaged, break up, find the woman of his dreams, get married and now they’re pregnant. He’s all growed up.
But some things really never change. He’s always been the underdog in the family. As such, he’s got quite a few obvious defense mechanisms for keeping himself happy and healthy and he’s most certainly got something to prove.
Especially right now. He’s being bombarded with people that want to do everything they can to help him get settled but he says he doesn’t need any help, thank you. He got where he is just fine without anyone else. Oh, if ever there were words so true in this world! Not just for him, but for me…
The number of times I’ve told the world, I’m fine…The number of times I’ve had to make my own mistakes in order to grow personally and professionally… Learning how to ask for help was certainly a challenge for a while! Sometimes I wonder how I got where I am today.
For some people, their weight is a reflection of their unhappiness and inability to admit they need help coping. For me, it’s more a reflection of all the fun I’ve been having in my life and making sure I try EVERY type of food I possibly can. I’m most certainly NOT unhappy doing that. It’s afterwards that the guilt and unhappiness sometimes sets in.
Now that I’m healing and am able to tolerate significantly more substantial sustenance, I find myself adrift in happy eating. (As I mentioned before, social situations are dominated by eating and drinking in my life.) Up until the past couple of days, I’d been doing well to say no because it wasn’t worth the 10 minute chew-a-thon required to properly consume unhealthy (yet tasty) foods.
But when the Lil Bro invited me over for some of I Mom’s homemade spaghetti with meatballs at a real Mac family dinner, I decided it might well be worth the effort. I followed the 1/4 cup guideline for the pasta and had about 5 meatballs. I was munching and chatting happily with the fam and suddenly found myself struggling to swallow. I simply got carried away, got distracted and didn’t chew properly. I stopped eating, sat for a few minutes a got away unscathed. But boy, oh, boy was it painful and frustrating to sit there with food stuck in my chest, unable to swallow it or spit it out!
This prompted the shocking realization of just how much I would mindlessly eat over a meal shared with friends and family simply because I wasn’t thinking.
What’s funny about this is that I’ve eaten properly at home for the better part of 5 years yet still packed on a few pounds. I’ve had the occasional indulgence but at-home eating, is relatively healthy eating for me – as long as I prepare it MYSELF!! It’s really been eating out that has been my very own undoing and to see it staring me right in the face was quite a revelation.
I guess what I learned was that I really need to THINK about everything I’m putting in my mouth. It’s really got to be worth it. Space is indeed at a premium in my new tiny tummy so I really ought to eat premium food designed for me to savour every bite. And since Bandster buddies are a wealth of information, I shall be exploiting their expertise and ceasing to making my own social eating mistakes henceforth. Life is just easier when you’ve got a little help.
It’s certainly been an adjustment to ‘just say no’ the past couple of weeks. But it’s also been nice. I’ve had an excuse to say no to a lot of the things that helped get me here. I’m not a yes person by any means but when it comes to food I want to at least TRY everything.
It’s all part of the seduction I’ve succumbed to my entire life. Food just FEELS good. I would most certainly classify myself as an emotional eater but more than that, food is something I associate with socializing more than anything else. ALL socializing. I can honestly say I don’t think I’ve EVER been to a social event and not had to put SOMETHING in my mouth.
See, at parties where I only know a few people, bonding over a bowl of Bits n Bites made talking to someone new that much easier.
I’m certainly not shy but for some reason sharing a taste for treats often leads to a chat with a nearby naughty nibbler.
Sometimes I wonder if it’s me that needs the bowl-buffer or if eating together makes it easier for others. Like, they talk to me cause I’m the fat girl and skinny girls know that fat girls are definitely going to eat what they’re not supposed to. They’re fat for a reason, right? And their guilt turns into an opportunity to confess their discomfort with their dietary discretions. Or perhaps I validate them in some strange way.
I can’t really say for sure but I do know that I can’t count the number of conversations women have started with me beside a table by saying, “Oh, I’ll just have one…” or “I really shouldn’t but they look so good…” followed by a smile in my direction and a mouthful of the morsel they’ve just berated. And it almost always happens with skinny girls that most certainly survive solely on salads. Seriously ladies, don’t look to ME to validate it when YOU have a lapse in self control! I’ve got over 100 of my own regrets to carry around and I don’t need yours too.
Don’t get me wrong, I don’t hate skinny girls (I want to BE one, remember?) and eating healthy is indeed a good thing. But I do get irritated with I have to hear about how bad something is for someone then watch them shovel a second serving down their gob. I know they probably worked for it with a pretty strict diet and a healthy portion of exercise but it still bugs me when they bark about eating something sweet once in a while.
Well, today’s the day. I’m leaving in approximately 10 minutes for the 4.5 hour drive to TO. I’m really a bit overwhelmed with it all and am struggling to feel anything. I’ve got a twirling feeling in the pit of my stomach but I’m not entirely sure if that’s my concern of starvation due to my prohibition from food or drink (not even water) for the entire day. I’m certainly hungry but it’s the no drinking that really concerns me…well, not really. It’s not like I’ve got nothing for my body to live on!
The really shocking thing about this whole process so far is I’ve actually lost a whopping 7 lbs on the pre-op diet.
I feel a bit like a contestant on The Biggest Loser. It’s funny because most of the images I found whilst Googling “no food or drink” had images of burgers and fries in them. Not only am I not allowed to have those TODAY, I won’t be able to even consider eating them for about 3 months. Shock, horror!!
I guess what surprises me most about the image is that burgers and fries are such a part of North American culture that a strike through them both is the clearest way to tell our people not to eat something. It’s like they’re the most recognizable food in our culture. Things that make you go hmm, eh?
After a previous note (written some time ago), I did some thinking about my extreme aversion to dating and suffered the harsh realisation that I’ve simply gotta stop this boyfriend bugbear.
There are many reasons for my change of heart but the biggest is that if I’m too scared to date then not only am I sure to avoid making an ass of myself in front of a potential partner (yay), I’m also never going to get to enjoy the plethora of perks that putting myself through a few awkward hours can lead to (boo).
Although I tend to do alright meeting boys in bars I decided against shimmy shaking and salsa dancing, wine tasting or whiskey wasting and opted to try something slightly easier to screen. So, I did a little research and explored other means of making the most of the London meat market…
I joined an internet dating site. Yep, that’s right. I am officially one of those people that post their most perfect picture and few personal details in a gallery of guys and gals that are quite possibly looking for a little something other than love… But ANYWAY, as some of you know I’ve dabbled a little with the online love machine in the past and well, we (as in the love machine and I) simply did not compute. As such, I abandoned the electronic in favour of more traditional means of finding a fun buddy.
See, the things is, all too often women (myself included) join these sites simply to see who else is out there in Singletown, UK. Sometimes they join for a laugh while loungin’ with the ladies. And sometimes it’s to find someone to scratch an itch they just can’t seem to reach any other way. Whatever the case may be its not usually to actually go out and meet some random computer nerd off the net.
However, I made a decision. I wanted to go on a date with someone I’d actually spoken to for longer than I’d snogged. So I sat down in front of my computer and entered the digital dating domain. And I like it. I mean, these boys just wanna add a little Canadian Bacon to their breakfast in bed and really, who am I to stop them?
This morning I realised just how much I wish it was normal to speak to people on the tube. In actual fact, I wish it was cool to speak to strangers in any social situation. There have been many times in my life where I find myself wishing I could just waltz up to that guy across the room, say something witty and introduce myself. Not because I want to pick up said boy, but simply because I like to talk and it’s always nice to have someone new to talk to. Sadly, socializing simply doesn’t work that way.
For example, this morning I felt as if my day needed some sunshine due to the overwhelming amount of rain we’ve been getting in the last few weeks and I decided to wear a pretty pink (natch!) dress. I feel pretty good in this dress and as such it makes me smile and causes me to exude a bit more confidence than normal.
So, this morning after my usual depressing walk to the station and the eminent journey to work, I got on the tube, found a stable place to put myself, adjusted my bag and looked around. There, standing right in front of me was the cutest boy I’d laid eyes on for the better part of 24 hours (I fall in love on a daily basis, remember). He was cute in an average kinda way. So, I check him out and much to my surprise, I caught him checking me out (well, by me I mean The Girls popping out of my pretty pink dress but I’ll take that over nothing). And I think to myself, I’d like to remove the morning anti-smile from my face and provide a cordial greeting of some sort. So, I stand there contemplating the situation and sneaking a glance or two of my new love when my eyes are drawn down to his flashy little (huge) time piece (I’ve got a thing for watches) and as I continue to scan I look at his ring finger and there it is. He’s married. And for some strange reason I was disappointed and I actually have no idea why.
Well, actually I do know why. I’m disappointed because the wonderful life that I’d pieced together for the two of us during the past 3 minutes will no longer come to fruition. Shame.
Then it dawns on me. What the hell am I doing? What difference does it make if he’s married or not?? It’s not like I’d actually SPEAK to him anyway. I’m not in the habit of talking to strangers.
I know my place. What I mean is, I know my approximate ranking in the friendship world according to X. Back in university, my friends and I used to use the phrase “know your role” when someone overstepped their bounds. These days it appears that although we don’t use those words on this side of the pond I still have friends that actually believe in positioning their friends in a mental hierarchy and treating their relationships with the appropriate degree of effort and attention.
You see, I can confidently say that generally I know my role since I usually find myself very near the middle of my social circle anyway. I consider most of my friends to be “good friends” and they’re all equally important to me. The remaining friends on the periphery (but still inside) of my social circle are acquaintances that I would like to have as friends or they’re friends by association. There’s no real hierarchy involved.
Essentially, I don’t like to rank my friends despite the fact that some of my friends can be so obvious about their pal’s position in the pecking order. There have been times when I’ve been fully aware that the relationship scoring system is in action and I can’t bare to watch the courting rituals involved in climbing the friendship ladder. I simply don’t think it’s cool to place a higher value on one friend than another. And I don’t think it’s cool for them to know about it either. Generally, I resent it in it’s entirety but I’m also very guilty of adhering to it because that’s simply how some of my friends are. I don’t like it but that’s how it is.
Most of the time I’m happy sitting in position three or four and I’m the odd number one for few friends but it’s only when the actual process of positioning becomes so glaringly obvious that I have a real opinion about it. Perhaps it’s simply a subconscious stationing of relationships…or perhaps it’s made obvious so that once one knows their place, one can be expected to behave accordingly?
I can’t say I understand why this happens but until I can get my head around it I guess I’ve resigned to the fact that I (or we depending on the situation) will need to sit down, shut up, know our roles, and wait our turn. Ah, friendship bliss.