I’ll bet you can divide everyone you know into two categories: steady Freddys and lovable flakes. The steady Freddys always show up on time and always have their assignments done. The flakes can’t be relied upon for anything, but they are lovable people and so their failing is always forgiven. I used to be a steady Freddy. If I was in a group and everyone was asked to say something nice about each person in the room, inevitably they would say, “Jan is reliable.” Boring but true. I came to every meeting, completed every task, looked up information only vaguely talked about. Pile it on as high as you could, I would turn myself inside out to get everything done on time. That was me before the murders.
I came to the realization today that I have become a flake. I forget deadlines and the dates of meetings. I watch the time to leave come and go. Sometimes it seems like too much effort to move the cat off of my lap to go and get a glass of water, so I remain thirsty. Oh, I’m fine some of the time. I’m actually extremely functional occasionally. I just can’t guarantee my functionality will coincide with everyone else’s needs. There are bad days now – birthdays and holidays and the beginning of school. A cloud settles over my head and I would just like to crawl under the bed and stay there. That’s not always convenient for others. I’m a flake.
Trouble is, when you were once a Steady Freddy, there isn’t a lot of tolerance for the flake. You aren’t a loveable flake, you are an annoying one. People don’t like it when you promise to attend an event and then never show up. They have learned to count on your performance and have no contingency plan for when you fail to produce something or leave a task unfinished. What is loveable and indulged in others is just plain annoying in the former Mr. or Ms. Reliable. I wonder why that is?
Well, I don’t know exactly how or where I lost my halo of responsibility. All I know is that I left it somewhere and I just can’t remember where or when. So, I apologize for any meetings missed, tasks unfinished, calls unanswered, and deeds undone. I’m not always sure which Jan I will wake up to in the morning, and I just have to play the hand I’m dealt that day. Sorry. Do try to find me lovable sometimes even if I am a flake.