Monday, March 14, 2005

Realising I am not brave

Reading some other peoples blogs is inspiring. Take Jessica Rabbit for example who shows up in some of my comments. This is a lady who has done it all or almost all anyway and her most recent entry is a brilliant piece of writing and a testament to true love.
However my life I need not point out is different. I have discovered the problem, apart from having to fill in a tax form that I knew nothing about, and don't know where to get, not being able to pay my rent, (they sent me a reciept for it anyway, so I am keeping quiet till they ask) having to go to the cops and sign a form that says I am no longer living with either the bane nor the joy of my life, (should have done it six months ago apparently), and apart from the fact that I don't make enough money, so I need to find a real job even a crap one, (I thought I had finished the sweeping shit jobs) and unemployment in this region is 15%, apart from all that, and having to organise a whole load of english classes for ungrateful students who don't realise that the letter Z is not the most popular letter in English and that H isn't there for decoration, apart from that, the problem is I suddenly realise I am a coward.
I am stuck in a rut I can't get out of right now because I am afraid to speak french. Don't get me wrong, one on one, my french is okay, I can have a conversation about almost anything assuming I am not tired, (I am just over full blown flu, had my heart broken, have no cash, and few close friends, worry about my boy all the time and generally worrry, how could I possilby be tired?). The worry gives rise to fear which is exhausting, which gives rise to more fear, which wins out to cowardice. I cannot get my head around working in a buger joint or serving coffee to French people I just freeze at the thought of it. Now if you asked me to work in a hospital, be a barman, wash dishes, clean houses, yeah no problem. But a guy who grew up in Ireland when there was no economy, has been rarely out of a job, has never not paid a bill in his life, and is intelligent, is now down on himself cause just like 5 million other people in France I can't get a real job and I am too proud to serve ice cream. What the hell is wrong with me. The language problem comes from hearing a new voice or a new accent, each time it takes me five minutes to figure it out. Imagine you are hurrying for lunch you order a cream coffee and you have to repeat it 6 times to the obviously dumb ass who doesn't understand what you are saying. How the hell did he get the job in the first place? Well he had more courage than I for one. That's how.
With the weather improving up to 18C so I didn't wear my gloves on the scooter for the first time today I was kinda wistfully hoping the sunshine would snap me out of my anal obbession and I could stop walking around like an acrobat with my head up my ass complaining about the smell. No joy yet. One job I applied for online today replied negatively so quickly, they couldn't have time to read the email never mind the CV. Oh the joys of being a naieve 18 year old again at the age of 37. Still I don't have a problem. I just need to get up off my ass and find the confidence and start talking the old blarney I used to in Ireland, albeit in a different language, accent and country to very very very different people.
Funny I was planning to write about St Patricks coming up and I have no idea what any Irish people here are doing apart from working. Still guess I won't be having my annual lunch time Guinness. Don't think it would go down to well in English class at the bank in Monaco. Ha how grand does that sound. Still I am not brave for staying here to be close to my son and whoever decides I am the man of their dreams in the future, just stubborn. Maybe its a good start.


JessicaRabbit said...

Don't be too hard on yourself. I think you are very brave. Living and working in a different country with a language not your own and so many unknown factors in your life. You have to be brave to have so much going on at once.

I am not so brave, I have a comfort zone that I live in. I am wondering where my life is going to go. Worried that I am not smart enough to go to school for the job I really want and deathly afraid that all I will ever be able to do is work in a bar my whole life.

We all have our fears, we all pull through, we all find better days.

I hope you find yours soon and thank you for your kind words and support.

Steve said...

I have been silently reading your blog over the past few weeks (that's right, a lurker!), because there's something very human, open and honest about it. You describe trials and tribulations that many expatriates, like me, have gone through. For my first few years in France I was obsessed with the language. But I felt I was always asking people to repeat themselves. It was years before I could understand an entire film. Talking came easier; I had all the basic grammar, maybe because I had had inspiring teachers. I read a lot and kept personal glossaries, too. I was always looking for opportunities to try out new words and expressions. It's a slow, but rewarding process, like learning to play a musical instrument. You'll do it. Then you'll look back and realise how much you've accomplished.
Another time I'll comment on some of your other posts.
Courage, tu tiens le bon bout !

BlueMoon said...

I agree with JessicaRabbit. You are brave. Just don't obsess about what you perceive you don't have and do something that you enjoy doing that you are good at! I am sure you are good at a lot of things.

Sorry to read that you are down. If you want to chat on email I am available...Just email me from my blog but please make sure to tell me on the blog (I don't check that account very often).

BlueMoon said...

And C, stubborn goes a very long way. At least this means you are tenacious which is a wonderful quality (of course I am tremendously stubborn too). It is a wonderful survival quality, I have found.

Don't beat yourself up! Everyone has their comfort level that they don't wish to get out of and most adults have issues with learning and/or speaking a new language (I personally suck at french and can't speak it to save my life - I can't even listen to natives and get what they are saying).

Warrior said...

Thanks for your comments guys. Nice to know there are people out there who understand.

Madame D said...

Just followed a comment from JRab.
I think it's amazing that you are staying in a country where you aren't completely comfortable with the language, basic communication, so you can be close to your son. Many many men I know wouldn't do that. I'm moving in May, and I have no idea the next time my ex will see the Boy. I have loads of respect for men who sacrifice for their kids.
I'd love to offer platitudes, but they'd just be lots of crap. The good and bad come and go. Don't give up, and the good eventually outweighs the bad.

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