A Little Personal

Welcome to 2019, everyone!

I've been wondering what to write about all week. What to tell you. I have so many ideas that I don't quite know where to start; I don't have any new book reviews I'm ready to share, or product recommendations I'm ready to discuss, so let's just go with something a little closer to home, yeah?

This month has been completely amazing and terrible at the same time 😄 and it doesn't seem to be slowing down in the slightest. I've been working on my novel, plotting and getting a solid foundation before I start trying to piece it all together, and I've never felt more inspired. Therapy has been going so, so well and I'm feeling more and more like myself every day.

That being said, I'm pretty sure I have a pinched nerve in my back, so I'm working on a few hours of sleep; I have an appointment with my GP's nurse at 3 today, so we'll know for sure what's up soon enough, but I can't do another day like yesterday. That was incredibly painful. If anyone has any tips for alleviating back pain, let your girl know. Please.

The heater in my car decided to only work on the highest setting today. I'm pretty sure it's going out, but the car is ten years old this year. I feel like it's probably time it was replaced.

My sisters' birthdays are this month, and I have a baby shower I'm planning at the end of the month for one very special momma. Honestly, with everything that's gone on in the first eight days of this year, I'm feeling really overwhelmed. I'll get through it, I always do, but man is it rough.

To top it all off, I've been thinking a lot about relationships this week. Friendships, romantic relationships, random but deep connections with people you've only met once and may never see again.

This quote came to me yesterday at the right time, it's something that has been on my heart. I was thinking about people I've spent weeks, months, years loving who are no longer with me. People who hurt me, people I hurt, the people who fell to the wayside just because that's the way life goes. You can't keep everyone close to you all the time, even people you love deeply, it's impossible. You'd  go insane trying to.

I think that's the point I got to by the middle of last year: realizing I can't deeply love everyone I'm close to all the time. I can't give 100% of me to every person I interact with, to every friend I have, because at the end of the day I'm going to have 0% while they've walked away with the rest of it. I can't continue to give all of me to people who only really give me 20%. It doesn't work.

At first I didn't really understand what was happening. Or why. I was angry about it: angry at myself for not being able to stretch myself that much farther, angry at the people who were supposed to treat me better. Angry. Feeling as though I had wasted time and energy loving people who I felt didn't fully love me back.

And then I did some growing. Bad things happened, I aged years overnight, and I went back to therapy because there was just too much. Too much. I worked on myself, I gained perspective, and I learned how to let go.

I learned how to forgive.

I forgave the people who took too much of me because I never properly established boundaries. I forgave the people I felt bulldozed right over me because I had been too lenient with them, for fear of being left. I forgave the people who had hurt me years ago because of their own demons, I accepted that I was just a casualty in their own personal war.

It doesn't excuse the behavior, it doesn't make it right, but it has helped me to move forward.

I've always tried to live by the idea that my love is free: I can't allow myself to expect anything in return for it, people elect whether or not they want to give it back. You don't have to buy it, you just earn it by being a decent person. You care for other people and I care for you. I'm a giver and a fixer, I'm acutely aware of these things, and a lover by nature.

And the love I have given people, often broken people, was not wasted because they disappeared. Or we fought. Or whatever the situation was. They needed it at the time and, frankly, it helped me grow as a person. These people gave me gifts in the things they taught me.

I learned patience and sacrifice, but I also learned when to say no. When to tell someone they've hurt me, even when they think they didn't. It doesn't matter if you think you've done nothing wrong, when someone tells you that you've hurt them, you need to listen - I did. I apologized when it was necessary.

And now I've learned to let it go.

This year I'm moving forward with allowing myself to be more emotionally free, to stop carrying the things that hurt me so close they continue to cut me, and so far it's really been working out. Difficult things are happening in my life right now, but I'm weathering them because I've been through worse - I will go through worse again, because the good has to come with the bad, but this time I'll have the tools to deal with it, hopefully with more grace than I've managed in the past.

I hope your 2019 has been gentle coming in. Thanks for sticking with me.

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