#oneaday, Day 188: Compromise

Compromise is a tricky business. In some senses it’s good. It shows a willingness to co-operate, to fit in, to be a part of society. But in others it means giving up part of who you are, usually in order to make someone else happy, or in order to fulfil the supposed “natural order of things”.

The trouble with refusing to compromise, though, is that you end up locked into an endless cycle of pursuing the unattainable and then feeling bad when it remains, well, unattainable. The clue’s in the title, dumbass. What makes you so special that you can attain the unattainable? You’re not BBC iPlayer. Wait, that’s something else, isn’t it?

Anyway, whether it’s a job or a relationship, unless you roll all natural 20s on every skill check you ever have to do (metaphorically speaking, of course) there’s going to be some element of compromise there.

And in a way, I think that’s a bit sad. Why should people have to give up on their dreams just because “society” (whoever THAT is) says it’s “never going to happen”? Why should people settle for second-best? Why should people have to put up with annoyances for the sake of something or someone they really love?

Because those things and people are also hoping for perfection and failing to find it, of course. Everyone wants to meet that special someone, Prince Charming, Sleeping Beauty, Christina Hendricks, whoever. But does it ever really work like that? How often do two people find each other and they’re perfect for one another? How often does someone step into a new job and think “Yes. This is LITERALLY my perfect job. There is nothing I would change about it whatsoever.”?

Our individual happiness seems to be made or broken by other people, and it’s a fragile thing. One little action, one thing said, one decision made; that can change everything. I know this only too well.

So what’s the answer? Is there one? Right now, at this crossroads in my life, there are two things I want that would help everything just fall into place. One: a job where I get to do something I love for a fair wage and get appreciated for it by the people I work for—both employer and customer. Two: well, let’s just say the term “nerd princess” would about cover it.

Is this too much to ask? Am I expecting too much? Do I put too much faith that all the good karma I have stored up over the course of the last 29 years will eventually lead to something awesome? I don’t want to give up. I don’t want to feel insignificant. I don’t want to be alone.

And above all, I really don’t want to compromise any more. As selfish as it sounds, I want to be happy. I want good things to happen. I want to meet someone awesome and nerdy and gorgeous and ride off into the sunset leaving the pain of the past behind.

I feel I have earned this. But is it just an impossible dream?

Published by

Pete Davison

Southampton-based music teacher, writer and enthusiast of Japanese popular culture.

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