Self-realization is rough sometimes. Having to face one’s shortcomings isn’t pleasant and it’s not meant to be pleasant.
Even for someone like me who does a lot of introspection and wants to grow and knows that the unpleasant moments are usually the best growing moments, it’s rough.
I tend to think of myself as a reasonable person, that I base decisions off of a logical process rather than an emotional process. It’s mainly a matter of being in contrast to how certain people in high school were, how they thought, on emotional processes. I had difficulties understanding their behaviors; they didn’t seem to understand mine.
People, for whatever reason, seem to think that I am a strong person. I suppose it must be true when so many people tell me and treat me so. There are times when I’ve had to be strong for others, and I like being able to be in that position. It seems to come naturally to me in that I don’t know what I do or say and somehow, I seem to comfort them or give them strength. It amazes me. I cannot fathom it.
It sounds weird but I am great at a funeral.
Having to be strong for myself, that is something… less natural? More exhausting?
Anyways, I have figured out that talking about personal relationships (general term) is a trap for me.
On the one hand, I like hearing different viewpoints because my understanding of people is limited and my understanding of myself is, at times, too acute; I often need perspective.
For instance, I couldn’t understand why Peter would keep in touch with me over a distance. I was thinking he just felt obligated to respond, but then it confused me when he sent me a gift or when he would call me. All my other guy friends dropped off; Peter was still around. My friend Jules said that he must care about our friendship, pointing out a detail, and to relax about it. I thought about what she said and I could see it - ah, okay! Peter and I are still good friends to this day even though life has taken us along different paths and we don’t get to talk as much as we might like.
By the way, I analyze everything. Pretty much.
I am always amazed when someone keeps in touch with me. I tend to think that any relationship with me is… highly challenging. I am amazed that I still have (a few) friends - their admission, not mine.
On the other hand, there are only a few people I can talk to freely and, understandably, they will be on my side, even though I’m not looking for someone to be on a side. So I will say something that is going on with me, not looking for feedback but giving them an update, and they will tell me not to do something, to move on, that I’m wonderful and deserve good things. I understand what they’re trying to do and where they’re coming from, but it sort of makes me defensive and not want to say anything anymore. I don’t blame them. It’s my issue. Why do I have this issue?
And it’s a trap for my friends because how are they to know when I want their support or when I am simply updating them?
This goes back to being strong for me. When I was going through that young adult crisis, I really needed someone to stand up for me, even if just for me. I really needed someone to dispel the negative criticisms coming at me. And I had no one. (Ugh, I’m crying about this still, just writing about it). Some might say that they were there for me; I don’t doubt that that’s what they were intending, but all their words were in defense of the other side, which I took to mean that I was in the wrong.
People think that since I am strong, since I am independent, since I am unemotional, that they can keep slinging stones at me and I’ll be okay. I’m mature enough that I’ll know it wasn’t personal. Keep slinging the stones. Jenn can take it.
Yes, I can take a lot. I don’t hate anyone, I won’t hate anyone. That doesn’t make it right to unload undeserved junk on me. It doesn’t mean that I don’t need reconciliation.
It seems like my being weak and vulnerable is… I don’t know. It unsettles people. People don’t know what to do with me. They don’t know what they’re seeing and they don’t want to see it anymore. Who would blame them? I don’t know what I’m going through and I don’t want to see it.
When someone does attempt to be there for me, to take care of me, I become cynical and shut the door. Because I’m not expecting it and I’m not used to it.
So in conclusion, I apologize, my good friends. I am a jerk. I’m a great fair-weather friend, even though I don’t want fair-weather friends, and I want to be a good friend and want you to be a good friend. Still, I know I am challenging and I try not to be, but that doesn’t seem to end well either.
(Still general term) A relationship with me is ill-advised. No, seriously. It’s a challenge.
Hey, I’ve told you before: I am tougher on myself than I am on you. Always. It doesn’t mean that I don’t love myself, it’s just a tough love.
I don’t know what it is to not struggle. Albeit, my struggles tend to be internal ones. I don’t understand why people like to remain in their comfort zones. My comfort zone, if I have one, if I can recognize it, annoys me. I want to knock it down, to push through it, because I know it’s holding me back.
Did I say “in conclusion” already? I did.