My whole life I've had a million and one friends and aquantances. It's easy for me to dig in and connect. I love connecting with people, places, things, colors, words...the list just keeps going on. There is little to nothing I can't connect with, which makes me like feel both a fraud and a safe haven for outcasts, misfits, and underdogs. I am good at connecting. I am good at falling in love with a million and one things that seem to contradict each other. It's energizing, and life giving, it's my thing. I get this from my father and ironically it is my favorite and least favorite thing about him. Probably because it is my favorite and least favorite thing about myself. I often think it would be so much easier to have a solid back bone with a long list of things I believe in and stand by. Instead I'm moved and swayed by humanities stories, listening to every last one, like a child who has not been hurt or betrayed. It is often hard to stand my ground, to know my place, and yet deep in my bones, i know it so well it hurts.
As much as I love people, and places, and adventures, I often needed a good amount of time alone to feel at home in my skin. This is why traveling abroad, alone, at sixteen was not scary but absolutely exhilarating for me. Being alone, with an entire day at my finger tips is just and thrilling and life giving and a human to sit and connect with. But since becoming a wife and mother it's been challenging to naviagate all the used to be's and the want to be's and the who am I's today. I'm trying to learn what fuels me now, and what compliments my life style, and at the end of the day what is the most important. With the new year I have been increasingly reflective and hungry, and a little troubled.
I fear I've been at best, a mediocre friend over the last five years of my life. Or maybe just a really good friend to only one or two, my soul sisters. But, I love so many, and care so deeply about all of them. And yet, my daughters are without a doubt, my first priority, and my husband, and my mental and physical well being. My extended family comes after that, and then sadly but understandably for anyone with a family, my friends make the next tier. I had a dear friend who I have loved and adored for years, seemingly give up on me. I reached out to inquire what had gone wrong, and never heard back. Not one word. I reached out again. Nothing. Done. That's it. This was the most foreign for me. This has never happened before. I tried to act like I had no idea what happened, but secretly, inside the comfort of my own skin, I knew it was me. Sure, it felt unfair, I mean, couldn't she see I was just treading water, and it was enough just not to drown? But I can see outside my own circumstances, and I can put myself in her shoes. I just couldn't hold up my end of the friendship stick. How could I? My husband was going through the hardest years of his life, my marriage felt fragile and I was taking care of two little people, while trying to keep my passions (any passions) alive and working a few side hustles to make ends meet. I was barely hanging on. I suppose it didn't look like that on social media, despite my earnest efforts at being transparent through the hard times. I am and always will be a joy monger. It's not that my unraveling is dishonest, it's that it is wholeheartifty wrapped in good, because at the end of the day, even the hardest dimmest hour, is still, so damn good. Sharing the good and bad in the ways we share today only brings up another heart ache... social media. The love/hate relationship. The tension. My desperate attempt to be here and now, to cultivate a life that is enough, just for me, and my heart cry to document, remember and share my stories. I am a storyteller. It is such a hard thing to balance, a fine line to walk. I find it mildly repulsive how quick we are to share ever last detail of our lives. But I feel tired of the struggle. I feel annoyed watching everyone I love live their lives through this medium, while sadly realizing I might be just like them. I can't be, I don't think I am, but denial is not attractive on anyone, and I want to be attractive, if only to myself. I guess I just feel tired of balancing things that I don't think are even worthy of balancing, they are just now apart of this world, and so to remain somewhat current and connected it feels rather necessary. But is it? And it's not all bad. Of course not. Sometimes, a lot of the time, I really do love it. I've been sharing my life, whole heartedly and openly, long before social media existed. Thank God I have that reference and perspective. My children may or may not have that.
I think I am learning that being spread thin does not feel or look good on me. I don't deliver under pressure. I fall apart, miserably. I have probably always known this about me, but after 30 years I am trying to build my life around these understandings. I keep wanting to hold tight to my people and my places. I do have those people that will remain through it all, and I feel so damn lucky.
I also feel tired. Tired of being diplomatic. Tired of making sure everyone else's feelings are tended to. I just want to be honest. But, I don't want to hurt others with my honesty. I keep feeling like this need to share truly is for me and my girls and they deserve all of me, the raw and unedited. I also deserve it. But is this appropriate for the internet, and social media, the non committal connector of us all. I wonder why I have forsaken my handwritten journal. Maybe it's better I handwrite or type and print to my hearts content, never having to worry about a soul taking it the wrong way, looking a certain way, making someone feel something. Anything.
And just like a journal, i would never worry about wrapping my thoughts up. they would stay unfolded, beautifully tangled, and thick in the tension without resolution. abrupt. no need for ending coming full circle. sometimes, these things are just for the taking, and feeling and unraveling.
i suppose i am a little bit of everything going into the new year... hopeful, a little hurt, found, discovered, transparent, humbled, and full. profoundly connected and strangely aloof. perhaps this is me, always, the new years just feels heightened, almost concentrated, just how i like it.