the curse of loyalty

{via albiedesigns on etsy}

i have decided that loyalty is indeed a blessing and a curse. i've thought this before, but it struck me specifically as i watched the steelers beat the bengals on sunday night. you see, i had to stay up and watch the whole game. i had to. i couldn't just go to bed, i had to see my team through to the end. i had to make sure they pulled it out and got the "w".

and as i sat there, desperately tired in the middle of the 4th quarter, i thought about going to bed, and how nice that would be. but i also felt it would be a betrayal of sorts. this is, of course, despite the fact that the steelers have no shot at making the playoffs this year, and at the end of the day the game didn't matter much except in terms of pride, and the playoff picture for the opposing team.

i digress.

if there is one thing i know about myself at this point in my life, i know that i am a fiercely loyal person. so much so that peter has said he feels bad for anyone who betrays, or picks a fight with our children. and oh, i do too. i feel awful for them because the first time around that person will have no idea how big the can of worms is. no idea.

i've actually had conversations in which i inform people - namely guys in relationships with dear friends of mine - that if they proceed to hurt my friend, i will hunt them down. they usually believe me, as well they should.

i'm one of those people who has a running list in her head. and once you're in, you're in. and once you're in, i'd basically die on a stick for you. [basically.]

of course it goes without saying that this loyalty of mine extends to teams, and brands, and places, and ketchup. [you cannot be from pittsburgh and eat anything except heinz ketchup, ever. ever. i'd rather eat no ketchup than have non-heinz ketchup. i spoke this truth to my in-laws once, and my father-in-law now points out the heinz on their counter at each and every relative instance.]

yes, i am simultaneously a marketing executive's dream, and worst nightmare. i am loyal. very loyal. this means it is hard to lose my business if you have it, and almost impossible to gain if you don't. well, not gain, poach. i don't take kindly to someone bad-mouthing any of my loyalties, or trying to trump them. unless that person/brand/ketchup does something quite a few times to prove they are no longer worthy of my loyalty, it will stay with them.

this is why i watch white christmas at least 5 times during the christmas season. it is why i am still kind of desperate to move back to pittsburgh even after almost 8 years, and the knowledge that it won't be happening any time soon. it is why i still cheer for the steelers, and the penguins, and even the pirates - though that's a little easier now that they broke their losing streak. it is why i scoff at the suggestion that another city could have a skyline that is better than the one in pittsburgh. it is why when a waiter or waitress asks me if i want ketchup with something, i ask if it's heinz or not. it is why i still count my best friends from high school and college as my best friends even if quite a distance separates me from them. [and why i may or may not have threatened one of their husbands immediately following their wedding.] it is why i am such a strong family person even though my family has its fair share of dysfunction [as every family does, or at least seems to].

yes, there are many ramifications of my loyalty in my life, but sometimes it would be so much easier not to be so loyal. like on sunday, when i could have just as easily gone to bed as stay awake and watch the game, but i couldn't. sometimes it results in silly arguments with peter because he says something pro-some other city, and i cannot let it go untouched. or someone says something about someone i hold dear, and even if it's true i cannot quite agree with them. or frankly when it would be far easier to go to walmart instead of target, but i just can't most of the time.

loyalty can be a huge blessing, but at times, it's also a curse.
a double-edged sword.
but that's true of most things, i suppose...



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