I thought the party was a big flop. As it turned out, so was my cancelling of the party. I managed to convince the first lady who arrived to leave (by telling her she could go home). The rest were not so easily persuaded.
This is the difference between speaking Spanish and speaking Peruvian. My words were clear: the party is cancelled. My message was not so clear apparently. 5 people came in anyway and didn't get up for another hour and a half. Two of those people actually found out beforehand that I had cancelled the party. They came anyway.
To top it off, one man (whom I definitely hadn't invited) marched into the ladies' birthday get-together. What do I do with that?
I was really not in any state to host guests and didn't succeed in transitioning there. It was pure agony. I was on the verge of tears the whole time, almost audibly begging God to make them go away. Waves of heat and dizziness had me incapacitated. They didn't seem to notice me and continued on chatting about Peruvian cuisine (everyone's favorite topic).
Then the clencher. The guy picked up the candles on my coffee table and started carving designs in them with his fingernails. Now I've never been great at confrontation, and when you add surprise in there, I'm really out of my element. It was culture shock at its best (or worst). I was filled up with this burning rage that I was totally unable to express. Speechless, I just looked away until he proudly asked me what I thought of his artwork. WHAT THE HECK ARE YOU DOING?! WHO DO YOU THINK YOU ARE?! YOU JUST CARVED DESIGNS INTO MY CANDLES!!! "It's a bird!" I said.
By the time they finally left, I was an emotional train wreck. I threw the closest thing I've know to an adult temper tantrum. I think it escalated my fury and anguish that I knew my neighbors and anyone walking by could hear the whole thing. I was mad at my guests for being them and me for being me, for not knowing how to deal with the situation and for not having the courage to do the things I did know I should have done, like standing up for myself.
As it turned out, I've had a lot of time to think since last night. There was another ear-splitting party down the street that kept Tim and me both awake the majority of the dark hours. Despite all my thinking, I've only come to 2 conclusions: 1. I'm a mess. 2. I can't un-mess myself.
If you're a pray-er, pray for me.