I have a hard time explaining why I have such a hard time with people and relationships. I like to describe myself as shy or awkward, as if I'm trying to deter the masses from taking any interest in having real interactions with me. I've been told that I love too hard and too often. Apparently I'm a lot of person to handle. I think all of that is true. I like to joke that my personal life is as big of a mess as my professional life is a success. There's no high end on anything, but you can see how things are shaking out. Professional: employed by the same company for 16 that I love and earn a decent income. Personal: On my fourth marriage and have two kids from two different dads. It could all be better and worse, but you get it.
I think the primary reason that I try to avoid people and relationships is that I live by the fundamental idea that all people are good and that we should tell the truth and do the right thing. I don't operate in areas of gray very often. I'm one of those people who will see something then pan out and see the root cause of it. I like to think I specialize in helping people grow up, mend relationships, and be who they were meant to be. It's an exhausting endeavor on my part, but honestly I don't feel like it's any choice that I've made for how I want to interact with people. For whatever reason, I seem to be able to see people for who and what they are and help them. It's a tireless and painful job. Very few of the people I help are there for me and I think that's ok. I have some really good friends and I'm blessed in that aspect.
Most people are very selfish creatures. They're content to use you and move on. Women always wonder how men fall in love with me so easily. How is it possible that I've had 8 engagement rings! Like it's some sort of accomplishment instead of something to be embarrassed about. Well, the answer is simple: when you listen to them, men feel cared about, and they interpret that as something more than me doing what I do for most people. Luckily, women aren't in the habit of throwing jewelry at me, so it's less of an issue. Yes, men will tell me they are in love with me before they've kissed me. It's happened several times, so I smile at them and tell them they are in love with how I make them feel about themselves. It has nothing to do with me. They even like to smile and tell me that they have no idea how this could've happened because I'm so not their type! If I had a dollar for every time I've heard that! I'm nobody's type. I get that. I'm alway the exception. One of the reasons I've always thought I was meant to be alone in this world.
But I'm not alone, am I? I have a husband and four children. I have people come in and out of my life constantly and I am constantly tired. I had this idea about starting a new blog here and me sounding different. I'm not sure why. My writing has never really been happy. I write when I'm in moments of deep thought, usually sadness or depression. I don't like that about my writing to be honest, but you can only fight who you are for so long. At the age of 37, I'm way past the expiration date of denial. I'll give credit to my being a student of counseling my entire adult life. I feel like I've internalized a lot of that process. There's always been someone there telling me to be fair, think of others, see the logic, and make the right decision. Be nice, girl. Take the high road. It makes me feel like I lay down and take a lot of shit from people because I don't get to go crazy and yell and scream. There have been plenty of people lately who have treated me and my kids unfairly that I thought deserved a big FUCK YOU and instead of having that satisfying, destructive moment, I just turn the other way and move on. Because I'm all about the high road. I do the right thing, pray to God for strength, and move past it. Being an adult just isn't as much fun watching as the overgrown children I see around me.
This whole God stuff is hard too. God comes in so many forms, doesn't he? It's like going shopping and trying to buy the correct spaghetti sauce. There's a wall of options. In the end, I sort of just want to go home and make my own. I think that should be ok too. I have always disliked organized religion. With all the corruption, prejudice, and arrogance, it's really hard to be part of it if you aren't like that as well. I've tried on several different religions to see how I felt about them, usually because the man I was with was part of them, and nothing has stuck. I've seen segregation of sexes, greed, vanity, cliques, arbitrary rules, and the garden variety bullshit you would expect. The thing is, I don't think any of this has to do with God. I love God. I love the spirituality of God and the universe and how all things are connected.
I really do believe that there is no darkness that the love and light of God can't defeat. When I am talking to someone and I see they are struggling, I always remind them that love is the answer. For all the pain that you've gone through, for anything that someone has done to you, for all the mistrust, fear, and anger that you have--love is the answer. Every time. Trust me, I've lived my life pouring out love instead of blood when someone has stabbed me in the back. I really do pray for people who have hurt me and when I see someone doing better, I believe that my prayers are working and I stand up and grab them and encourage them to keep doing better. You see, I find that even if someone is faking it, if you positively enforce it, they forget it started as a lie. If you keep pretending to do the right thing over and over, you have to admit that you have started a pattern of actually doing the right thing. So keep going. It's not that I can't see it's starting as fake. I'm not stupid and you are not fooling me.
There is a great peace and zen when you can see someone for who they are and accept them. You don't need to like someone to see them. You don't need to condone their behavior to accept it. What happens is that you stop fighting. You stop being disappointed and your expectations match reality. There is peace in loving what is. And I've had so many arguments about free will versus your life being mapped out to plan. I hate to admit that as time goes on, I believe in free will less and less. I've met too many people and had too many crazy coincidences for that. If you run into me, then you were meant to. You may not stay with me for long, but I promise you that you needed something from me and apparently it's my job to give it to you since I have the skill set to help you. I've spent a lot of time helping people heal their hearts and relationships around them. I've held a lot of hands. And it's ok that they let go of me and don't come back when they are done. Not every friendship or romantic interaction is meant to last a lifetime. I try not to take it personally and understand that I did what I was meant to do. But it leaves me very tired and most days feeling a bit hopeless.
Most people tell me that they've never met another me. At least the people who have those level of interactions with me. Sometimes it makes me sad, but most days I just smile. Really, I'm trying to not let anyone know what a "me" is because I have the tendency to get all used up. I don't take enough time for myself to feel better. I get lost in the idea that someone besides me is supposed to love me or put me first because that's what I do. It's a constant cycle of disappointment. And don't get me wrong, I have amazing people in my life. Just yesterday I went to yoga at my husband's urging and then had a spa day, courtesy of my friends who bought me a gift card. I don't want to sound ungrateful for any of that. But I think of the level of interactions I have with others, that it would be nice to just be left alone. It would be nice not to have someone around me being selfish and forcing me to look and see that nobody is able to give me the kind of priority that I give to everyone else. I'm always last and today that's hard.
Today I'm feeling tired and used up and I want to be left alone. Today I don't feel like putting on a happy face and checking in with people who need me. I get frustrated and angry that I have more to do and care for than my kids. Those are the people who really deserve my time and attention without having to take care of me back. But all the sulking in the world won't take away God's plan for me or what I'm supposed to accomplish. It's weird that I say that people are fundamentally good, but also selfish. It's weird that I've always voiced a preference for being alone, but I've only managed it for a few years at a time here and there. I'm constantly married or getting married. I hate that I usually feel the most alone when I'm married. Really I blame the institution of marriage. I take it all so seriously. Once I take those vows, then you get my full force love and commitment and it starts being clear what I'm really capable of putting in versus the more casual ok whatever, do what you want. I'll sit there and bleed all this love while someone doesn't treat me with the same love, respect, and priority, and not leave until they leave me. Then I sort of exhale and wait for the next one to show up hoping the cycle won't repeat again. Sounds stupid when I write it out like that.
I have this very logical brain. I look for patterns and I point them out expecting people to agree with me and tell me i'm right and it never happens when it comes to relationships. The human race is really a bunch of optimists who want to buy this disney princess story really badly. There's always the "it'll be different" and "lightening never strikes twice" and "that was just bad luck" or "don't take that personally". It's funny. I'm an optimist at heart. I like to believe all of it. I know better, but I want to believe it. I look at the macro, the state of the world, and the micro, situations in my own life, and it all seems like a mess. I don't know why anyone has faith in anything with what happens day to day. I just try to put down as much of it as I can and keep walking forward. I help as many people as I can along the way. I'm not sure what I'm moving forward towards, exactly, but I just keep walking. I don't think there's anything else to do.