I care too much, and because I do, I hurt too much.
I read an Instagram post the other day and it went something like this:
People are in our lives for a reason, season, or lifetime. The pain comes when we put them in the wrong category.
I don’t know about you, but that hit hard.
I value relationships greatly, too much in fact. I’ve always been the selfless type of individual, prioritizing everyone else’s feelings and wants over my own.
It was really hard for me to watch people walk away, let alone leave a bad impression. I held so tightly to the idea that they were meant to stay.
I held so tightly to the idea that the history I had with someone was far greater than the future I could have with them even if I outgrew them.
It was hard for me to cut people off, even when I knew deep down that I did not like the way I felt around them. I did not like the person they brought out of me.
But I never considered that being too selfless caused me to drain myself. Being too selfless caused a part of me to leave with them. Being too selfless caused me to feel less than my self.
Anything forced is not real.
So why do we force them into the lifetime category? Why do we resist these lessons and find ourselves in repeating, unhealthy scenarios? Why do we beat ourselves up when we placed them in the wrong category?
When I read that Insta quote, I had an “a-ha” moment.
Although I agreed whole heartedly with the quote, there was something in me that was nudging to get out.
A perspective I never really explored.
The little voice in my head said, “Or maybe the problem is we try to categorize everyone we meet instead of simply allowing people to flow in and out of our lives.
It’s not a matter of fitting them into the wrong category, it’s a matter of categorizing in the first place. If we were to stay present and fully embrace it, there would be no aftermath pain. You’d accept all of what life brings you, whether it comes or goes.”
For the first time in my life, I've finally met someone new without feeling the need to designate them into one of those categories. I just enjoy the time I have with this person and by doing so I've never felt more like myself with a stranger before.
No pressure. No expectations. Just the present.
It's incredibly freeing to feel this way because although I do care for this person, I know I'll be fine if they don't stay. I was fine before them and I will be fine after them. I know I’ll be hurt, but I have to be selfless for ME. I love myself too much to stay where I don’t belong.
This may sound cold-hearted but I just don’t care anymore. I don’t care about outcomes anymore. I’m just really trying to detach from what could be and make room for what WILL be.
What’s meant to happen will happen. Don’t rush. Don’t force.
And in the meantime, I will still enjoy myself, be myself, and live my life how I please.
I have full faith that what I’m looking for is out there and if it means people coming and going, then so be it. I will find what I’m looking for. I will never settle into something just for the sake of being in someone's company.
Don’t ever settle. EVER. What you are looking for, even if you think it's impossible or not real, is out there too. Believe it and you'll receive it.
The truth of the matter is not everyone you meet stays and not everyone is for you. Most of them come and go, and it's usually to teach you a lesson.
And then that’s when I realized the next thing:
We carry a piece of everyone we ever met within us. We are a mosaic of everyone we've come across with, and each little piece is aimlessly stuck together and incorporated to make a unique and beautiful work of art.
I think it's a beautiful idea that if you look closer into each and every single person, you get to see every other person they've been influenced by - the good, the bad, the ugly, and everything in between.
It's beautiful to know how impactful we really are, how significant we are to be able to change the quirks, behaviors, phrases, and actions of other people. We hold a lot of power. It's up to you to use it for good or for bad.
Here's a piece of my mosaic:
Every time I see a classic car I instantly smile and think about my dad and how as a little girl we used to drive in his white Camaro blasting old alternative rock music like Nickelback.
If it wasn't for a simple book recommendation from an old friend, then I wouldn't have embarked on my spiritual awakening journey. In all honesty, I don’t know where I’d be without it. Thank you for changing my life, I mean it.
To the person who showed me that vulnerability is power, now I am not afraid to show the real me to everyone I meet. Thank you for teaching me to be true to myself, and being okay if they walk away after. I wouldn't want anyone that doesn't want me.
I learned how to open the wine bottle from the bottom of the twist off from a guy I had an unexpected connection with. Then used the same trick to open it on a getaway with some friends and taught them as well. Now I don’t open my bottles any other way.
I always give cosquillas to people because I know how good it feels since my grandma has done it to me my whole life.
I now give out compliments to anyone I come across with because I know how it can make someone's day, all thanks to the man at Tropical Smoothie Cafe that said "wow you have such gorgeous eyes" in a genuine, non-creepy way.
I write my "S" starting from the bottom up because my middle school friend did so and I thought it was cool and different.
My entire music library is made up of all the favorite songs of everyone I've ever met.
I’m a firm believer that we came onto this planet to grow and to evolve on a soul level. I believe before coming to earth, we have some say in the events that will happen over the course of our lives solely for growth.
Before being born, I’ve always thought of it to be a gathering with God, your angels, your guides, your soul tribe in which the story of your life is curated before it even starts.
Your spiritual team then adds in “characters” that make up the cast of your life, characters that also have the same interest in growing their soul. Your 3rd grade teacher that sang hallelujah every time a student answered the question correctly, your mom and dad, your first kiss, your first toxic friend, even the person that broke you to your core.
All of which were introduced into your life for a reason. For you to reach your highest self…if you did not resist.
I have come to learn that everyone in our life plays a very specific role, one in which most don’t stay for every scene of our life. They are carefully placed in our path to teach us the lessons we signed up for before we took our first breath.
Each person is a different lesson.
So when I started to look at the people in my life and that come into my life through those eyes, I started to look at them as "life teachers". It was humbling in a way. I no longer held resentment towards those who “hurt” me.
Because at the end of the day, I asked for this.
And if I didn’t go through what I went through, I wouldn’t be who I am now. I wouldn’t have realized all that I just wrote about.
For that, I am grateful to everyone I’ve come across, even those that didn’t recognize my value because it forced me to recognize my own.
They taught me self love. Because when they left, the only person I could run to was myself.
So if at any point - past, present, future - you experience someone walking away from your life, someone you'd never thought you'd be strangers with again, remind yourself that it is all for a lesson. What you gained from the relationship/experience is far greater than what you lost.
I know it hurts. I know. But you have to understand that life is surrounding you with people and situations that stimulate growth. It's easy to convince yourself "but I was better off before him/her, why did they need to come into my life just to leave", and you're not wrong. But you may not have had the opportunity to reach the potential you have now without having gone through that.
Now you know what you deserve, now you know what to look for next time, now you know what you want and don’t want.
Let that experience teach you, let life be your teacher and let go of it. Learn and let go. It’s in the past, don’t carry it with you into the future, whether that be holding onto it or by being fearful that it will happen again.
If you truly learned from the situation, it won’t happen again because you won’t put yourself through that again. But you also have to stay strong for whatever other situation arises. That’s why growth is so important. You won’t be fully healed, but you’ll be wise enough to get yourself out of that hole a lot faster and healthier. You’ll realize now that these triggers, these painful experiences are a good thing because it’s an opportunity to improve yourself and let go of the baggage that holds you down.
Life is actually trying to help you, so let it. “Be willing to open your heart in the face of anything and everything”.