I have been thinking a lot about the idea that we as humans deserve certain things. This was spawned by many friends saying after my lover left me over the weekend that "I deserved better" or "He doesn't deserve me." When he called to apologize he told me I didn't deserve to be treated the way he treated me.
I know these sentiments were all designed to be soothing, supportive and reconciliatory (in the case of his apology anyway) but I just came away shaking my head and pondering this concept of entitlement.
No matter how "good" we perceive ourselves to be as humans, are we really entitled to any particular kind of behavior or treatment from others? Are we entitled to good things happening to us?
Let's face it, there are plenty of wonderful people in the world who have shitty things happen to them. Does anyone deserve to get cancer or lose a loved one or have their house demolished by a tornado? Does anyone deserve such treatment?
Life just happens, doesn't it?
There's also this:
Everything with my lover, I asked for. I had plenty of chances to walk away from him in the two years I was with him, knowing that we didn't want the same things but I chose to stay with him. It's like this passage from the end of Chapter 20 in Mountains Wanted:
Isn’t this what I wanted? Didn’t I push it all to this eventuality? I could have walked away so many times unscathed, but I refused. I knew the outcome, yet I stayed to watch it all come crashing down.
So, in that case, didn't I get what I deserved?
I still haven't figured out my exact thoughts on just deserts. Feel free to chime in with yours, though.