The eternal pessimist

You might not know this about me, but I am your basic pessimist.  In fact someone who knew me very well once told me I was the most negative person he’d ever met. Ouch. Unfortunately, even allowing that his outlook was pretty bleak at the time, he probably wasn’t far off. The fact is, I do tend to see the glass half empty. In fact, since the glass is half empty anyway, let’s just round it off to ‘empty’ and be done with it.

Your basic, doom-and-gloom Eeyorian pessimist, that’s me. (There’s a reason I gravitated towards a doomsday cult in the seventies, and that people are always giving me stuffed Eeyores.)

But, you know what? I’m turning over a new leaf. Not so far that you’ll hear me rhapsodizing over spilt milk or anything, but I’m going to have more gratitude attitude, not the usual, I-should have-known-it-would-turn-out-this-way- It-always-does, mind-set.

Always and never. The pessimist’s two favorite words. From now on they will come out of my mouth only when I’m talking about God. (As in, God never changes, and God always knows what you’re up to.) I’m going to stop looking at life through the always-never filter.

For example, I’ve been known to say, “Oh, Max, you’re always barking.” But is he, really? Of course not. Just because he rouses from a sound sleep to bark furiously at me when I get up from my chair to get a snack, is no reason to say the A-word. He’s no doubt thinking of my waistline, clever dog. Whatever. The fact is, it’s just not true that he always barks. It just feels like it.

And what about when I say I never win the lottery?  That’s not true, either. I don’t always buy a ticket. How many times might the ticket I didn’t purchase win? I’ll never know.

At any rate, to counteract my pessimistic outlook, I’ve decided my watchword for this year will be gratitude. When Max barks ferociously at the slightest sound, instead of complaining, I’ll be thankful I have an early warning system that is warm and furry, and likes to curl up with me on my lazy boy.  When my lottery ticket comes up a loser, I’ll be grateful that I had enough money to waste on a ticket. (I don’t really, but there it is.)   

Yessir, from now on, whenever possible, I’m going to turn the rainy days into sunshine and lollipops. What’s the harm in that?

Unless it’s freezing rain. Then all bets are off.

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3 Responses to The eternal pessimist

  1. Gail Gammell says:

    I’m not sure the negative ne’er do well knew you all that well, so I wouldn’t it take it so to heart. You can be quite positive. Anyway, I thoroughly enjoyed your latest entry, as I ALWAYS do. You NEVER disappoint. How’s that for a new application of the A/N?


  2. The Fighter says:

    Well as someone who DOES know you very well, I can see that things haven’t always worked out for you…but adopting gratitude as a watchword for the next season of your life is nothing if not wisdom! And I know you like to think your “totem” is the great and noble beast of burden, Eeyore but I always thought you were more like Piglet…oh well, what do I know? Love you and hope your spirit of good cheer rubs off on me!


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