I’m Selfish to the Bone… and Rather Proud of My Superpower

On Friday, I said that “In a world that seems completely rotten with meanness, ridiculous bickering and all sorts of pain-causing nonsense, there will always be a person (or 13) who takes the time to give (love, things, time, an ear…) to others.” Then I shared a picture, and said, “I have grinning down to a science… a shining nearly-blinding witchy science.”

So… yesterday, someone sent me a message that started like this: “I am older than you and have lived more than you. I feel duty-bound to tell you…” The rest goes on to point out my “selfishness”, how I’m too young “and childless” to understand why my “smirking face insults people who know better.” The whole thing annoyed me. So much so that I almost replied to the person in question with a piece of my mind that would truly show what an insult looks like.

But I didn’t. Instead, I thought about a good friend of mine who lives with depression. When she is having one of her terrible days, she says the meanest things. Her uncanny coping mechanism has never pushed me away… I never take it personally… I know a lot of the meanness comes from her need to justify the horrid feelings that plague her days and nights. Most of the time, my friend and I diffuse the situation by discussing her feelings of severe sadness and my eternal elation in the most pragmatic of ways… Then we remind each other how good it was to be able to have those talks. And it truly is, my Wicked Luvs.

The idea of feeling sad and hopeless all the time is something I can barely understand. Just like my friend can hardly comprehend how I can continue smiling when I’m in pain every second of each day. Every now and again, my friend will say things like, “I don’t know why you don’t walk away. I push everyone away.” And I tell her, only half-jokingly, “I’m too full of myself to allow any kind of meanness to touch me. My nearly nauseating sense of self-love, narcissism, and my armor of happily bared teeth helps me deal with anything this world can send my way.”

When things get really tough, some people brood and call other people names… I grin at myself in the mirror while blowing kisses at me. We all have our virtues and faults, right? Except me—I’m perfect *cough, cough, cough*. So… to ye, who called me selfish, you are quite right. If selfishness is defined as the art of loving me, myself and I more than I love anyone else alive, then I am selfish to the bone… and proud of my superpower.

If being miserable is your way of showing the world that you care, then by all means, be as miserable as your soul needs you to be. But don’t you dare expect others to act just like you (and yes, by “others” I mean “me”). Expecting everyone to dance life’s music with your steps would be pretty damn selfish of you. Live and let live, I say—cliché, but that doesn’t mean it’s untrue.

One more thing, I would never know how to love another person, or how to care about other people, if I didn’t adore myself the way I do. And because my selfishness comes sprinkled with a bit of wicked yum (okay, with a whole lot of wicked yum) here is me, myself, and I, “In the Mirror”:

In the Mirror, by Magaly Guerrerofirst published on Instagram

33 thoughts on “I’m Selfish to the Bone… and Rather Proud of My Superpower

  1. I always marvel at how on earth someone like that finds the time in their lives to get so riled up about a smile, let alone take the time to actually message you about it. I’m so over people right now. *sigh* Over this weekend, I’ve watched the tragic events in Paris unfold, and then, after an initial outpouring of support, today I’m seeing people bickering across social media about which hashtag is the most appropriate, or whether one country deserves more sympathy than another. Makes me want to hug my Phoebe, who knows she’s the cat’s whiskers, and is purringly uninterested in human foolishness. Your grin is always a refreshing oasis in a desert of lemon-lipped online-bitterness, Lady M!! ❤

    • My general online interaction has been spotty these last week or so. I mean, I always check up on you and on a few of my dearest darling friends, but I have not really surfed around to see what’s going on. After I read your comment, I talked to Rommy and she, too, told me that this kind of thing is all around the web: people arguing over whose pain is more justified, obvious or whatever. That makes no sense. We should all be cats.

  2. People are unbelievable! Chronic depression makes people say the meanest things( I grew up with a mother with that particular disease, which if I may add was tons of fun!) but it is usually to people close to them. And perhaps he is left all alone and his only outlet is Internet trolling, but we can’t dismiss the fact he might just be an asshole.
    Who gets offended by a smile? Jeez!
    Last week I saw a video of a tetraplegic person who still smiled and was full of life! This gave me strength as do you day in and day out. You don’t get strength by the people that get crippled by life only by those that honor it!
    Lots of love and thank you for your sweet words on my blog!

  3. Ah, but for some people it’s not enough that they look sad, they must infect others to do the same, or put on the semblance of it. Its the last part that makes me want to hurl, because sometimes people only care about the semblance of sadness, and making sure as many people see it as possible so they can hold it over others – actual emotional connection comes secondary with people like that.

    You’re one tough cookie to keep on smiling the way you do. While some may complain, there are plenty out there that are inspired by it. Either way, you do you. 🙂

  4. I went back to your Friday that reminded me of me.. It referred to someone who has a mother w/a history of chronic depression.. I can so relate.. as well as to the person who had made that comment to you.. For years, my own mother would find things wrong with me.. or make unjust comments to others about me.. I was her ‘punching bag’ as well as a butt end to her jokes.. It took years for me to figure out, that she was so unhappy w/herself that she had to take it out on me.. It takes a bigger person to not be affected by that, and I guess I fail at that… I just wished I had had the nerve to point it out to her and tell her, how her hurtful words affected me.. I never had the nerve to stand up to her and show her my honesty.. instead, I sat back and took whatever she said… I think in your situation, that person was envious of how you always see the better and it bothered her that she doesn’t know how to do that. I do know my mother called my strength, my ‘mean-ness’… I guess she was envious and didn’t know how to be strong? It’s a shame she took the easy way out .. She was a shrewd, book smart person.

    • my bad, the first sentence makes no sense,…. what I meant to say, was, in your Friday post one comment came from a person who has a mother w/depression which reminded me of me and my past situation…..

  5. When I was growing up in the 50’s and 60’s (yes, I am that old) every time I tried to stand up for myself or set any kind of boundaries, I was told by my mother that I was being selfish. I was the oldest and it was up to me to do all the sacrificing. Needless to say, I grew up thinking everyone else was more important than me and I have a real crap time trying to set good boundaries for myself and then trying to keep them. I so admire your self-love and confidence. Women and girls would be in a much better place today in this world if we all had a heaping helping of what you glow with! Keep it up!

      • I am sure my mom was told the same thing. She was a pretty good artist, yet I never saw her draw anything while I was growing up. She turned her creativity into sewing, which, of course, is considered useful and womanly.

    • Why our society has turned self-love into an abnormality, even into something that marks a person as unkind, will never make sense to me. When I was younger, I couldn’t understand why so many people didn’t like themselves, or didn’t allow to love themselves openly… Then I grew up and paid attention to society. It’s a sad business…

  6. There is of course a bad kind of selfishness, but you do not have it, Magaly (at least from what one person can tell about another person from souls bared in writing online) and those who clutch and then send out the bad feelings have as much of it as anyone. Self-pity is a far worse thing imo than self-love, because self is always in everything we do, but love will always trump pity. I love your smiling pictures and they often bring much needed sunlight into my own dark places, so thanks be for your superpowers. ;_)

  7. You fully being you is what attracted me to your delicious blog, oh and that grin. I’m glad we are such a supportive blogging community, it is sometimes the only uplift and encouragement we receive. And I guess you can’t win them all , some just want to project they’re own bad vibes onto others. I doubt anything can dull your shine!

  8. I do not understand those people who have to make sure you know they disapprove of you. not you particularly though yes it just happened to you, but the plural you, anybody, everybody. ok, so now I mean you personally…there must have been something specific to elicit that but…too young, childless, selfish, insulting people who know better by refusing to give into despair? I believe I’d have told that person I’m sorry you feel that way, please feel free to never look at my smirking face again.

  9. The sad thing is that I know, intimately, what this person feels when seeing another person so happy and strong – and it’s the ugliest side of being depressed; Not being able to stand seeing happiness in others, being consumed with the unfairness of it all. But to not reach a single pause, point of insight, from the moment one sees the picture to having composed and sent that ugly letter – well… That’s on them, entirely.

  10. You are brilliant and I love you! And, I love me too! One thing I learned from what happened to me and with my other relationships, that I never loved me unconditionally! Well, now I do! I am smiling and grinning, every minute of the day! I even wink at myself in the mirror! LOL!

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