You have an argument with your sister. She’s decorating the Christmas tree and doing it ALL WRONG. Nobody starts at the bottom and works to the top. The Christmas system is lights first, then tinsel, then baubles, then angel. Everyone knows this.
You point this out. Not as tactfully as you could have, but that’s ’cause She Ruined The Tree. You tell her so.
She thumps you.
You hit her back and take the tinsel hostage. She storms off and your meddling mother demands an apology.
Fine, you say. But only because I’m the bigger person.
You apologise. Really slowly, like talking to a cat.
‘I’m sorry for being bossy but I’m an eldest child so I can’t help it’.
Later that day..
You meet a friend, late. ‘I’m so sorry’ you say. ‘I didn’t realise the time’. He’s too kind to point out that this is the fourth time running you’ve kept him waiting.
There’s an army of excuses for why it’s never my fault.
But the problem is not my birth order. Or my inability to read a clock. It’s not my upbringing. And the problem’s not you.
The problem is, I think my time is more important than other people’s.
The problem is, I’m insecure and being in control makes me feel better about myself.
The problem is, I think I’m the centre when I’m just a tiny part.
I hate to say it. But the problem would appear to be me.