Today has been a real struggle. Struggling really badly with constant headaches (interspersed with migraines – yes there is a difference) mainly caused by stress. But really struggling most with feeling like people in my life aren’t who I thought they were. Not on unimportant things – but on the very things I liked and respected them for. Some whom I’ve known for a very long time (more than half my life). Even though I’m obviously disappointed, I’ve always felt it’s better to know the truth than not to know.
It often means re-evaluating the relationship (whether it be friends or family) but usually that’s for the best – either the relationship deepens and grows (which is good) or it fades and/or ends (which is sad but is usually for the best). It stings to lose someone you care about out of your life – the closer and the longer the relationship, the bigger the sting – but a healthy relationship needs honesty and openness.
I’m not saying any of these people have deliberately hidden who they are on purpose. With each of them, it’s been different reasons. For some it’s just fear of being disliked if they show fully who they are – which I understand. And for others it’s simple a matter of no one shows 100% of themselves to every single person they meet, so it’s inevitable, even if you’ve known someone for a really long time, to see a new side to that person and sometimes that’s a positive side and sometimes it’s not.
Some of these people, I’m sure our relationship will grow deeper as we work through seeing this other side of them, others I think our relationship will fade or end. I will miss them, but like I have to keep remind Sammie (with her teenage high school dramas), you can’t force someone to be friends. And sometimes you can just be too different from a person to make the relationship work. Some things can be worked through, other things can’t be.
I will always mourn the loss of any relationship for any reason but I’ve also been the type of person of moderation. I’m not the type of person to just say “forget they ever existed” and move on like the relationship didn’t matter at all, but I’ve never been one to dwell or obsess. Depending on the type and closeness of the relationship and why it ended, I will give it a reasoned amount of time to see if things are resolvable but I won’t just cut things off immediately with no chance of resolution but nor will I give endless time and effort.
At the end of the day, it’s about striking up a balance between respect for yourself and respect for the other person. In the past, I’ve had too little respect for myself and let people walk away all over me, until they’ve had enough use of me and abruptly end the friendship. But on the flipside, I’ve seen too many people who think too highly of themselves and not care about other people and end friendships over petty things and not even try to work things out even after decades of friendship and I don’t ever want to become like that.
So I’m going to keep trying to be balanced. And it’s not easy. Some days the actions of people who I thought were friends really hurt. And some relationships just can’t be saved. But as long as I have those who are closest to me (John, Rose and Sammie), I can get through the loss of any other relationship. Of course there are very dear friends and family who I would be deeply hurt to lose (whether through death or ending of the relationship) like I still mourn for my grandmother and wish she was still alive, but I know I will get thought. I dread the thought of ever losing John or one of the kids, but I live with that fear by convincing myself they’ll live a very long time and hopefully I will go first.
Anyway, I think I’m getting really morbid now, but I’m tired and I’m sad. I’ll be ok, but just need time and sleep to get there.