You know, I have taken it in the chin recently, for having “changed” as a result of my life.
I prefer to call it my “growth.” But that could be construed as a fat thing. And we all know; I am touchy about the fat thing.
Yes, I admitted that I had changed a bit in the past year. I have become as some people see it, more selfish. Maybe some would say, more self-centered or my favorite, obsessed with certain people. Stuff.it.
Wanna know what the past month has shown me…really? I will be ohsohappy to elaborate on the finer points.
It’s shown me that the people, who are saying I have changed, haven’t taken the time to keep up with me. To know what’s really going on in my world and maybe, just maybe, see the why to my change.
I have decided that point #1 is the biggest eye opening experience I have had as of late. I did blog recently that I had a couple of folks tell me that I had changed. I have made the effort with a few trusted folks to let them in on the staggering hurdles that my kids, my Girl and I have had to deal with lately. They seem to all come upon us at one time (isn’t that always the way) and we have dealt with/are dealing with/will deal with these obstacles for the foreseeable future. Needless to say, we “sequestered” ourselves a bit, relying on each other and supporting each other, as a family should. I don’t have to go into detail with everyone to defend my metamorphosis, just understand, in the Game of Life, with experiences you change. It’s necessary for survival.
As a dear friend said to me one time “The only thing constant is change.” It’s true.
It’s shown me who truly, truly cares about me. As a person, as a friend, a family member, whatever…but it’s truly shown me where I fit into people’s lives.
Please don’t think that just telling me I have changed will prompt me to bend over backward to “go back” to who you wanted me to be. I can’t. You can’t look back and you can’t change what has happened…just how you deal with it moving forward.
Please don’t bomb me with “you’ve changed” and then watch me make the effort and freeze me out. As if to “teach me a lesson.” All that’s gonna do….is make me find the nearest exit and be gone. I don’t need people in my life that are gonna sandbag me then walk away.
If you care enough to tell me how I am affecting YOU, how my changes are hurting our relationship, then care enough to stick around. If you care enough to unload your Poo on me, then when I go to share my Poo, then care enough to see if I remotely need any support…or better yet, keep your Poo…I am dealing with my own…and if you can’t help, show support, provide an alibi or shovel…I don’t want your Poo near me. But thanks for the flyby…
I have met new people, re-connected with old people that just want to talk to me. For no reason at all. Just want to check in on me and see how I am. It’s a 5-minute conversation; it’s a quick text message or a short e-mail. Simply put, it’s “Hey there! Just thinking of you. How are you?” I have gotten so much better at responding simply because some days, it’s my lifeline. The one random person, reaching out in a moment that I cross their mind. Try it sometime…the person on the other end will treasure it. I speak from experience.
It’s shown me what true friends are.
I have had to take the time in recent months to re-evaluate who my friends are. Sadly, the folks that I thought were my friends, for the most part…needed a pool or a hook up. I know, I know, sounds so very cynical, yes? Well, I am surly at this point and it’s my blog, so I can say what I want. I lost the majority of my friends in my “divorce.” Which I find extremely humorous, due to the fact if it wasn’t for my social butterfly tendencies and the desire to meet and mix it up with these people, they wouldn’t have had a side to choose or summers of unending volleyball…don’t think we got folks together at our casa at the urging of the ex-…. oh no…that’s me dawg…. all me…I was the party girl. And in some sort of stupid blind loyalty, I ended up with the empty dance card.
Not that I am sour grapes or anything. Oh, contraire…. good riddance. In my new life, I have met some really great folks that actually seem sincere. These people are funny, sweet, they want to share their lives and their history with me and they want to know about mine. I still have my 3.5 friends left and I can’t wait for them to all get to know each other and see what I see in each of them.
I am slowly and painfully coming to the conclusion that not all friends made are lifelong friends. Some are just there for a short time. Some are there to lead you to another and some are there simply to serve as a warning sign…*sigh*
It’s shown me what a family has the capacity to be.
Let me tell you SOMETHING…I had an incredible experience this weekend. I went camping with the Girl, her cousins, 2nd cousins, their friends, their children, the son and the biggest bulldog EVER. And it was AMAZING.
Do families really, really just love each other? Do they really make time to see each other on days other than Thanksgiving and Christmas? This is an absolutely foreign concept to me. I have cousins and 2nd cousins I haven’t seen in 20 years. I have some that I have never spoken to. We don’t get together for holidays, birthdays or Tupperware parties…nothing. Not that I am the World’s BEST Keep In Touch-er. We have established in many posts that I don’t keep up my end of the bargain…but they keep in touch with other members of my close family and yet…I get nothing. I have always been the distant one in my immediate and extended family my whole life. I didn’t need to be the center of attention or to have “favorite kid” status among all of us. I knew I was loved. As children, I have awesome memories of my cousins, aunts, uncles, etc…and as we got older, these bonds seemed to wither. Thank God for Facebook, or I wouldn’t be in touch with about 90%, ok 99% of my family.
But that’s ok. I will adopt the Girl’s family as my own.
It’s shown me I am way stronger without these people in my life than I am with them in it.
I have had months of hurt feelings. I have had months of “what can I do different to help you love me?” I have had months of letting those nearest and “dearest” go at me. Telling me how I have done them wrong, how I am a terrible friend, terrible parent, and terrible person. I have had them telling me that I should probably go suck pond scum and CPS/INS/CIA/FBI et al. should be called on me each and every day.
I am serious when I say these people claim to love me. To have my best interests at heart and are “concerned” about me. These same people have run me down, over, up one side and down the other.
My question is, if you love me and are concerned for me…maybe attacking me isn’t the best way to get me to confide in you, to lean on you, to tell you a dirty joke, you think?
No…I have decided that just because we have known each other for years and year or are genetically linked, doesn’t mean you have to be in my orbit. It simply means somewhere in our lives, our paths crossed and changed both of us.
For good, for bad or the ugly…
In the end, I will be happy.
I am determined, as I enter my 40th year of walking on this rock, that I will be happy. I will be who I am supposed to be FOR ME. I have found that I actually LIKE me. I get to be funny and cranky and loving and bitchy and sad and happy…sometimes in the same hour, and all just because I can be.
I like my wrinkles, my fluffiness (well….), I like that I am a lefty and can’t dance. I like that I am not athletic at all. I like my short hair and my mind-of-its-own side part…
I like that the person who fits my world is 5’2” of Stephanie size perfection. And that she likes me just like I am…God help her. I want my friends to see her, to know her and know how she loves me, makes me strong and makes me deal with the crap head on; not doesn’t let me hide from it.
I like that I have loud, mouthy, lazy kids. I like this fact most days, simply because, if it wasn’t me they wouldn’t exist…. and because they exist, I will get to live through them, my grandchildren, great grandchildren…I will leave behind a legacy. Yes, it will be a legacy of chore challenged, dirty clothes, shortsighted people…but it will be my legacy. And I am infinitely proud of both the daughter and the son…they are of me and with me…I love them with every breath.
I will no longer go out of my way to change who I am depending on who I am around. I will not put myself in situations where I am not authentically Stephanie.
I have found I love being authentic.
I have found that I love being Stephanie.