Sunday, April 5, 2009

365/9 Cara

The difficult thing for me in participating in 365 is that there are people in my life who probably don't want to know HOW they impacted me. Do I write about them anyway? What will be the cost to me - or to them?


I worked with a woman named Cara. At first I thought she was nice. I have always prided myself on being a good judge of character, but lately think I am quite useless at it. I had barely graduated from University and Cara spend some time talking to me about what classes I had taken, what I liked about school and what I disliked. I have ALWAYS loved school and I have been quite clear about it. I shared, enthusiastically, what I liked, what I hoped to pursue, and why.
Cara entered graduate school soon after and one day was sitting at work discussing her entrance essay with other students who had been accepted to the same program. As I sat at the table and listened to their discussion I realized that Cara had "quoted" me almost verbatim in her article and had claimed it as her own. It absolutely blew my mind. I feigned interest in what she was saying and asked to read her essay. Without thinking she handed it over to me. I think my jaw dropped. I am certain she saw the look on my face and she snatched the essay from me. It was as though she had tape recorded the conversation we had and written down everything I had said as though it was her. At that point the relationship between us changed. I knew she had been dishonest. She KNEW I knew she had been dishonest. This is a person who "claimed" that integrity was the most important thing in her life.
It impacted every interaction we ever had from that point on. I think I somehow threatened her because she interfered with my employment from that moment on. (Accusing me of doing things when I didn't, making statements about how I acted when she was not present etc.)
I think until that point I thought that when people spoke to me and asked about me it was because they were interested. From that moment on I became jaded. I no longer trust the motivation of people. I think that is sad.

No comments: