I don’t know if it’s because I’m getting older or if it’s just because I’m so chaotic, but it feels like time is whizzing by so fast that I’m missing everything. October just got here and now it’s almost over. This month has been a roller coaster of mixed emotions, introspection, scurrying around and getting nowhere, a good bit of stress, and lots of good intentions. Some gone horribly wrong and others that actually went right.
This month has been interesting to say the least. Or confusing. There have been good moments, scary moments and moments where all I could do was sit back and say, “What the hell just happened?” Such is life. There have been wrongs that I should set right, and emotions that have been strong enough to knock me off my feet. Not all of them good ones. I’ve enjoyed time with A-, found time with others, and lost time with still others. I’ve been up, I’ve been down, and I’ve had reality slap me in the face good and hard at least a couple times this month. I’ve been hurt, I’ve been angry, I’ve been sad. I’ve been happy, I’ve been proud, and I’ve been downright jubilant.
Through all of the curves life throws, I’ve learned one thing for certain. I have to be myself. Sometimes I’m unreasonable, sometimes I’m forgetful, sometimes I’m whiny and sometimes I’m unfair. And that’s okay. It’s called being human. I have slowly accepted the fact that I cannot be what everyone needs of me all the time. I know I disappoint people sometimes. Even if it is unintentional. I never want to disappoint anyone. I hate thinking that I’ve not been what someone else needed me to be. But as much as that is true, I know that people have, from time to time, disappointed me, and that I am guilty of the same. The thing is, in the past, I was such a people pleaser, that I did so at the expense of my own soul. While it may be okay to be the first person to apologize, I practically apologized for breathing, all the time. I’m not doing that anymore. While I will definitely apologize to someone I’ve hurt, and while I definitely have no problem admitting I’m wrong, I am no longer going to apologize when I’ve nothing to apologize for. I can make amends, but I won’t beg forgiveness for things I did not do.
I know, I’m rambling and not making much sense. While I will always try to make things right, while I will always do my best to be a good person, to be honest and straightforward and fair and accepting, in the past, I always felt like a bad person when someone hurt me. I always felt it was my fault, or that I had no right to feel hurt. Why is that? Not that I want to dwell on hurt feelings, or hang on to them, or use them, it’s okay to feel them. It’s okay for me to feel slighted, or angry. I always tell A- to accept her feelings and own them so that she can move on. For some reason I never took my own advice on that. It was always easier for me to pretend I wasn’t hurt or angry, because I didn’t want the other person to feel bad.
Silly stuff to be dwelling on, I know. I will blame it on the late hour. I think I have strayed quite a bit from my original thoughts.
A tumultuous month is coming to a close. I can only hope November brings calmer seas. A- is having particular difficulty with a classmate. She tried being his friend. That didn’t work. Now most days she comes home from school angry and annoyed, wanting to rip something’s head off. She feels sorry for this boy at the same time she knows she cannot deal with him. His behavior is completely out of control and unacceptable. I’m not sure, but I think he has some pretty serious issues to deal with, and maybe he acts out to get attention, but he just makes things harder for himself and everyone around him. In the beginning of the year A- stood by him, defended him to the other kids, tried to be as kind as she could, but his mood swings and wanting to be her friend one minute and the next minute calling her horrible names have taken their toll. She is done. Still, despite anything I can say, she is letting his behavior get to her. She can’t ignore him, because he won’t be ignored. She can’t be kind to him because it backfires when he starts ranting and name calling. I’m not sure what the answer is. She is letting him affect how her day goes. I want her to be kind. I want her to be forgiving. At the same time, I don’t want her to be a doormat for anyone. I want her to control her anger, and practice patience and understanding, but I don’t want her to let people run over her. I don’t know what the happy medium is. Right now I’d settle for her not choking him.
Life isn’t always easy, and it isn’t always black and white. Sometimes we are wrong, sometimes we are right. Sometimes we overreact, and sometimes we don’t react enough. Sometimes it’s okay to be mad. Sometimes it isn’t. Sometimes our emotions control us. They swell and grow until we aren’t quiet sure what to do with them anymore. Sometimes we don’t know how to go about setting wrongs right. Sometimes we don’t know how to stop letting someone else dictate our mood and our feelings. We feel adrift, out of focus and out of hand.
But some days…some days we do everything just right. Some days our focus is clear and our course is set. Those are great days. Some days we know just what to do. Some days we can conquer the world – and ourselves.
As I look back on the month that will soon be nothing more than a memory, I can only be satisfied in knowing that I tried my best, and I remained true to me. Being true to yourself is the greatest freedom. It doesn’t mean never having to say you’re sorry, or that you are always right – it just means you no longer sacrifice yourself for the sake of others. It isn’t about being selfish or self serving. It’s about realizing your own worth and that if you are going to live your life to the fullest, you have to remain true to your thoughts, feelings and beliefs. That’s all.
I hope these are lessons that A- learns young. I wish her to be kind, caring and considerate to everyone she meets, but I wish for her to be those things to herself as well. Life is confusing and relationships can be tricky. We can only navigate the best we can. Sometimes we do the right things. Sometimes we do the wrong things for all the right reasons. Sometimes we just can’t catch a break. Whatever the case, time marches on, and we have to keep up.