Envy is my deadly sin, if we're to be specific.
Now, before I launch into my tale, I want to make a few things clear. First, I know this entire reaction is silly and irrational. I am aware than I have a damn good life, and to imagine something different would be to picture something entirely disingenuous to who I am. I know that given the choice, I would remain wearing the same shoes I am now, as despite them being less shiny than others, they fit me a hell of a lot better.
That being said, what is the purpose of having an anonymous blog if not to write longwinded posts complaining about petty things?
So... I took an impulsive surprise trip to HomeTown for the Easter long weekend. As part of the process of surprising my mom, upon arriving, I went directly to my little sister's house.
By sister's house, I mean the house recently purchased by her new boyfriend. By new boyfriend, I mean her boss, who is 12 years her senior, and who she moved in with after dating for two months.
By house, I mean something a lot more glamourous than anything we lived in growing up. I mean three bathrooms, jacuzzi tub, amazing view, so many extra bedrooms that they can spare a "studio" for their brand new hobby of painting on top of the usual spare bedrooms and office-- plus shiny new non-Ikea real furniture. On top of this, they have jumped full speed into responsible homeowner's mode, speaking of replacing hardwood floors, knocking down walls, landscaping, putting in a hot tub. My sister speaks in confident tones, making statements such as "Well, I certainly don't want to sell anytime in the near future" and "I'm not sure if I like his idea of building a suite in the garage, although it would help with the mortgage."
In other words, my sister jumped from broke and moving back in with the parents to a half million dollar home (in a town where that actually buys a lot)-- all in one fell swoop.
And me? Well, since graduating high school, I suppose you could describe my trajectory as consistent... upwards and mediocre paced. I've done all the practical things... multiple degrees, paying off my credit card balance, putting off buying a car, working while going to school, keeping separate bank accounts, waiting the appropriate amount of time to take the next relationship step. And, well, to show for it... I'm living in the nicest one-bedroom I've ever lived in. And while it does have a dishwasher, a substantial lack of spiders, and actually room to move, it certainly doesn't have a backyard, and guests get to sleep on the (admittedly comfy) couch.
So, yes, although I will only admit this in whispers through gritted teeth or with several beverages in me-- I'm a little jealous. I'm almost too much of the poster child for making sound decisions, and my sister is anything but-- and she is the one living the high life as we speak.
I know what comes out of everyone else's mouth when I do admit this. "But you'll be better off in the long term".
I might snap if I hear the words "long term" one more time. I have been thinking in terms of the future since I started university nearly ten years ago. Almost everything in my life is decided for with the "long term" in mind. Anytime I describe plans for the future, it has twelve steps in between.
"Well, first I will finish my dissertation, then I have to move for my year internship, then we go to the city where the Duke is finishing his PhD and I will get registered and hopefully find a job, then we probably move once he's finished to a place with a good university for him to work at... and then we can relax! That or it is time for me to take my maternity leave."
More than anything, I am probably envious of how simple it all seems to be for her right now. In the middle of a never ending to do list, I yearn for that simplicity. Even though I know this is probably just a clear case of grass-is-greener-on-the-other-side syndrome, of wanting what you can't have. As the Duke points out to me, I would be horrible at living a quiet life. I need to bust my butt to get what I want. It's in my basic chemistry.
The truth is, she's happy. I see it in her eyes when she's with him. And so am I. In my life, and for her. Just because I'm envious doesn't mean she doesn't deserve this happiness. So I probably owe a few hail marys for this one.