Given the fact that I am a writer, some people may be surprised to learn that I am a very private person. After all, here I sit on a regular basis, tapping out my innermost feelings to be published on a blog that is readily available to anyone in the world...a mere click of the mouse away. Writing those innermost feelings for the eyes of so many 'out there' is a curious interplay. Yet, I am very self-contained when it comes to revealing details of my private life. There are lines that I feel are necessary to be drawn for all of us, with each person having their own personal watermark that is to remain sacrosanct.
For the most part, in social media forums such as Facebook, Twitter and this blog, you will rarely hear me reveal truly personal details about my life. I am happy to share stories from my childhood, and also to open up about topics and experiences that touch me deeply. I feel this is my way of fulfilling one of my life's gifts, which is that of healing. Again, for the most part, you will see me post very positive, uplifting blog articles, Facebook and Twitter posts. While we all have difficult days and negative experiences, I strive to see the positive in every moment and every person.
Tend your bucket!) about an individual that I labeled an emotional vampire. This was my way of exercising the frustrations I had about this person. My nature is to forgive, so much so that it can become a detriment. I forgive, I understand, I sympathize, I lift up, I encourage....and in the midst of all that kindness, I overlook the fact that I am allowing another person to literally bleed me empty.
Please know that I am not suggesting that forgiveness is wrong or foolhardy. I will never truly change in this regard; I am a loving, caring, nurturing Soul and this is intrinsic to my nature to see the good and positive in others. However, there does come a day where it is graphically demonstrated that the kindness doled out has been gleefully, and most likely, selfishly consumed while the recipient of your care is laughing at your foolishness.
Stepping completely outside of my regular comfort zone, this is what I wrote on my Facebook page:
You know that inner voice that tells you a situation is shady, as well as the people involved, yet you try your best to see the good in all involved? Trust the inner voice FIRST, and avoid the inevitable drama and disappointment in the whole dynamic. People do show you their true colors, and sometimes those colors are weak & lacking in depth and substance. #Lesson Learned
I had no idea how people would react to the Facebook statement above. It was out of character for me to the extent that I spoke of a negative personal situation. Hours after posting it, I came back and was surprised to see the response to the post. Thus far, there has not been a single negative comment. To the contrary, every comment was positive, uplifting and supportive - all true examples of people that I am blessed to call friends. This tells me that I was right to follow my instincts with the Facebook post. It also reminds me that this very instinct is sharp and clear; I need but to pay attention to that still quiet voice in the future to avoid similar negative experiences.
I cannot fault myself for wanting to see the good in others. This is actually a trait that I am happy to own. I will continue to do this, live my life this way, and continue to give more second chances than most people probably merit. I say this with a smile, now, hours later in the day when my own heart has lightened from the wonderful support of true friends. I can't change my own true colors, but I can recognize when those around me are displaying conduct and behavior that is a screaming, neon, flashing warning sign. True colors are displayed in abundance if we're willing to recognize them for what they are.
The beauty of this experience today is that I have shed the weight of a fully grown person who was dragging me down on a regular basis. I have shed the negative emotions of someone who is motivated by selfishness. I have shed the need to feel responsible for a great number of unnecessary ties. The conscious choice to forgive and move forward, while also excising someone requires a lot of contemplation. It is not a choice made easily or with haste. It is, in this instance, necessary and I am at peace with it.
There's another old piece of wisdom that tells us,
Water seeks its own level.Another way of expressing this concept is that there comes a time when vibrations no longer match up. In essence, regardless of the dramatic tone or lack thereof, people will vibrate themselves out of your reality. Sometimes we're the ones left behind. In this situation, I am the one doing the walking away. This is not done with a light heart, as I never enjoy breaking ties with someone who once mattered a great deal to me. It is done, however, with a sure heart, and perhaps that is the stronger part of this particular lesson. Of a necessity, I have looked at my own culpability with this situation. I knew better. I knew better months ago, yet I continued to offer those second chances. I wanted to believe that the spark of beauty that I know resides in each living, breathing being was burning strongly enough in that person to eventually negate the unpleasant traits that I didn't want to look at.
While I cannot speak for this person's interactions with anyone else, what I know now is that the interaction with me has been predominantly self-serving. Even as I write this, it pains me. I could revert to habit, forgive and give another chance to this person, but this time, I am walking away. Forgiveness isn't a question here; I will get to that point within a few days. It isn't in my heart to harbor grudges and simmer in resentment and ill feelings. That will do nothing but bring harm to me in the long run, while this other person will blithely go on about their life, not sparing a thought to the repercussions of their actions. I need to implement an equally purposeful action in my life with this decision and move forward with the assurance that I am better for this experience and better for making this choice.
It is curious that I've used water analogies throughout this blog. Water seems appropriate to apply, as it can exhibit physical manifestations of emotions - we call them "stormy seas", or placid, calm, quiet, tempestuous, soothing, peaceful, angry. All descriptive words that can be applied to relationships and behavior patterns. I rode some stormy seas with this whole situation, and today I can admit that much of this could have been avoided had I heeded my intuition months ago and cut ties. I didn't do that, choosing instead to give more chances. That bit me in the end.