November 7, 2019
Yes, R E S P E C T. Those 7 letters pack a huge punch and, honestly, they are hitting home for me as of late. First off, Happy Thursday you gorgeous human. Hope your week has been awesome, and you are getting in the spirit of the season. In Baltimore, I feel like it is full steam ahead with the Holiday's - lights are up, the weather is cooler, the stores are decorated, etc. You just cannot help but get sucked into the "fa la la la la" and it is not even December yet! Just driving home from a corporate job in Tyson's Corner yesterday, you saw homes lit up in Christmas lights, wreaths hanging on business establishments, and legit people buying gifts. Okay, okay, my list is put together with people for whom I will buy for but still...COME ON!
It only felt "fitting" that Thursday's be all about "Thanks" and what I am thankful for in my life. And, where I want to start is with a conversation I had with my Mom this time last week which talked about being treated with RESPECT. My parents just celebrated their 38th Wedding Anniversary - I know, AMAZING - and I have, always, adored, admired, and LOVED their relationship. Marriage is tough - geez, I know firsthand - but it comes down to 3 (okay, maybe more) key factors that go beyond being in love. To me, they are:
Communicating. Talking - not f-ing texting. Being vulnerable. Sharing. Can I say "talking" again? It is the intimacy of being able to open up and share your thoughts, feelings, dreams, fears, etc., without the worry of "how is this going to be perceived, or how am I going to look." No facade; just raw. This is me, this is how I feel, and this is what I need.
Honestly, I struggle with this piece so damn much. I am a pleaser, a doer, and I feel that I get taken advantage of in so many realms. I don't communicate 100% with how I am feeling because I am afraid of "what will happen next." Time and time again, though, I get hurt. Guess what? I get taken advantage of, and feel sad/hurt/disappointed, because I ALLOW IT. And I own that, and I am working on myself to fix it. It is hard though. Really fucking hard! My therapist and I recently had this discussion; well, it is an on-going discussion where I am sure she feels like she is talking to the wall behind me.
She said "how empowering would it feel to simply communicate what you want/need? You have the power to change a situation/relationship. Although you feel it is coming off as being 'mean' or 'selfish' or even "bitchy,' it does not have to be that way. What is the worse thing that could happen if you said how you felt? There is always a risk BUT the odds are you are going to get what you want OR be able to move on from said situation/relationship that much quicker. Take charge. And just communicate."
Trust - ick. Sorry, it's just how I feel and, if you have been following my journey, you know I have a real issue with it. Don't get me wrong, there are people I trust but trusting another man to be in a relationship with is a little daunting. It's scary (from the emotional aspect). Ugh, my ex did a number on me! On the surface, I could be "all in;" underneath, though, I think I would always question, worry, and wonder. And how is that fair to him? How do you trust when you have been so hurt? This is a guard that I have to let down, and, again, one that I am working on. Will I always doubt? Dear God I hope not; do you know how much emotional space and anxiety that takes up, and how much power I feel I still give my ex. It is CRAZY!
TRUST ME, with time, I know this will change especially when you (alright, I) meet said person who makes me feel safe, loved, fully myself, and, of course, TRUSTWORTHY.
Finally, RESPECT. Really, what is "respect" anyway? A noun (or a verb). Due regard for feelings. I will end it there. Lately, I feel there has been such a disconnect, and disregard, for being respectful. Personally, and professionally, I have been getting it on all sides. I shared with my Mom that, in any given situation, I try to put myself in the other person's shoes. Yes, sometimes, I may be quick to act - I am not perfect - but I remember what I would want done, or to happen, if I was the other person. Maybe I think about it too much. I am not self-absorbed or only looking out for myself. I care, I have a heart, I am generous beyond words, and I would just like the same respect given in return.
Maybe that is too much to ask. I cannot change a person but I can change a situation. And I think this all goes back to the communication piece. My idea of respect, and what I want/need, is, most likely, very different than someone else's. How, though, can someone understand that if it is never communicated? I guess me thinking people are mind readers is not so much, huh? Ha!
Here's to being THANKFUL on this Thursday, and showing YOU, and I, a little RESPECT! And, do me a favor, just communicate...and, in turn, I will do a better job of this myself too!