The Need To Combat Envy

“Teach me, God, to cherish all that I am, all that I have, all that I have yet to offer. Help me to rejoice in the joy of others even when in pain, to take pleasure in their pleasure, to wish them nothing but blessings and peace. Amen.”~from Talking to God, (c) Naomi Levy

jonathan-kruk-in-dickens-christmas-carolLast night I sat in the Old Dutch Church in Sleepy Hollow, watching a friend storyteller give a masterful performance of “A Christmas Carol.” Jonathan Kruk, who was named “Best Storyteller in the Hudson Valley” by Westchester Magazine, gave a brilliant (and yes, I told him that) performance. He is performing this again on December 8, 15 & 22, so if you live in or around Westchester, NY, you’ll have an amazing experience. For full information, click HERE.

The envy part, the reason for this posting?

I wished it was me up there.

I do not, in any way, shape or form, have wished any less for Jonathan, but…I wish I had been enthralling that audience. Not doing the same show: its Jonathan’s, and I do wish him nothing but the  success he deserves.

But, when a friend tells me he and the Mrs. are taking a trip , or I hear of someone having no problem plunking down hundreds or thousands of dollars on presents or just plain anything…or even telling me they had a nice time at home with their spouse…

I wish it was me. Not sitting here alone. Not fearing if I’ll get this job or not. Not upset that I can’t give celebrate the upcoming holidays the way I wish.

Wishing I could just relax and let some of this tension go, let the envy go. I do not wish anything negative against anyone else. As the prayer states, I want to rejoice and share in their happiness and pleasure, and to suppress the pain I’m feeling and not make it all about me.

This was a hard one to write. I don’t want a lot. I just want to be able to relax a bit and breathe.

I have so many in my life who tell me of my worth, what I have to offer, what I do offer them, and I do take them to heart. Just not all the time…just not enough, yet.

Envy is a horrible thing.

One last thing: his performance brought me joy, smiles, laughter, and it took me beyond myself for that hour+, as well as the time reflecting on it and sharing it with Lisa, on Facebook, and now here with you.  For that, I give thanks to Jonathan and all else involved in the production.


About StuHN

I am a creative individual with many areas of passion: Professional Storyteller; NYS Certified Drama Specialist/Educator; Professional Development Coordinator & Facilitator; Workshop Leader; sometime Puppeteer; Playwright; Director; Performer; Teaching Artist; and sometimes more.

Posted on December 2, 2012, in Caring, Family, Fear, Grief, Healing, Inspiration, Loneliness, Love, Mindfulness, Prayers, Support and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 9 Comments.

  1. You’ve faced some unwanted changes this year, but even if you hadn’t, it’s pretty normal to see the “grass is greener” and want it. Learning to see the green-ness of our own lives is worth the work involved.

    And, any day you’ve found some joy – however brief – was a good day.

  2. The holidays are a particularly tough time for those who are suffering. We are continually bombarded with messages to buy, be “home for the holidays”, be cheerful and festive and celebrate. And while we understand intellectually and emotionally that there are others far worse off, that doesn’t really alleviate one’s own emptiness – if anything, it can add to the guilt. I’m glad you found a temporary escape in Jonathan’s performance, and that you have a network (although distant) of loved ones to support you.And here’s hoping and praying that you get that job and gain a little security so that you can concentrate on healing.

  3. This is a particularly timely post, Stu. As the others have already said, feeling envious at this time of year is normal – even in better circumstances. During especially hard times, quadruply so. I think you’re doing well when you can watch Jonathan’s show, enjoy it AND be not just civil but encouraging toward him afterward. Indications of a good heart.

  4. I understand what you mean when you say I just want to relax and let the tension go, but when both your living and your emotional situation drag you down, envying someone else’s success may be more an emotional response to what you don’t have and he does (I wish I were in his/her shoes) than the kind of envy that destroys “I deserve what he has more than he does./It’s not fair that he should have it and not me/If I can’t have it, I don’t want him to.”

    If you weren’t currently under such a strain, perhaps your reaction would have been more along the lines of what could you learn from him or ideas of how to improve your performance. And you’ll get there, I know you will, it just takes time for envy to turn into admiration or something similar.

    • I already admire Jonathan. His talent is amazing and I learn so much from him every time. So …that is not the point.

      What I wish is that I could perform in locations like he does, to be wanted as much.

      I told stories the next day : food court in a Wholesale Foods. Great audience …wonderful people who worked there… but…the venue difference hit me.


      Believe me
      …Jonathan is a great teller and a good friend

      • I can relate to that. It sounds like when a friend’s book is published by a major publisher and has a great turnout for her readings in good venues vs. a small publisher, small venue, and minimal audience. I admire and applaud her but I can’t help envying her celebrity. It’s only human nature to feel this way and in my case, envy may motivate me to try harder to get a good publisher for my next book.

        Insightful and thoughtful post. Gives me a lot to think about.

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