At 35 years old, I’m pretty clear about who I am: my likes and dislikes, my habits and tendencies, and most importantly my personality.
A while back I submitted a post about finding ways to move on from an ended friendship and shortly after, a mutual friend made me aware of an issue that my ex-friend was having, an issue that I’d had in the past myself. I told my friend that I was going to reach out to What’s-Her-Face and give her a few suggestions on what had helped me, and she said, “Girl, let it go; she has her own plans and she’s gonna do what she wants. She won’t care about what you have to say.”
She was probably right, but after having thought about it, I decided to reach out to her anyway. I had been in her situation not too long ago and believed that my suggestion – whether she decided to take it or not – could have been helpful to her.
Don’t get me wrong: I was still pissed and butt hurt and in a state of pettiness in which I could have had in my pocket the penny she needed and would have straight faced told her I didn’t have any cash and lost absolutely no sleep over it… but in that moment it wasn’t about her or our personal issues, it was about me being me. In the midst of my mess another friend gave me some of the best advice I could have received: “Don’t let people and what they do stop you from being you.”
It took some thought and even a bit of prayer, but I eventually reached out to What’s-Her-Face and gave her my suggestions. Whether she took my advice or not, I don’t know nor do I care. I didn’t reach out to her for her to follow through on my suggestions in order to make me feel accomplished in any way, I reached out to her to prove to myself that I was still me. Regardless of our issues, despite the emotions, in that moment I had a choice to be something or someone other than Kim, but I couldn’t. The only person I know how to be is me regardless of how it’s perceived or if it’s accepted. I have to choose how I want to live this life and what kind of legacy I want to leave. I have to answer for my actions and mine alone.
It’s easy to let emotionos – especially anger – deter us from our regular course of action. That little devil on your shoulder will have you believing that your words and actions in anger are no big deal; “they deserve it,” but once you calm down and tap back into the REAL you, what will you feel, who will you find? Personally, I have fought too hard to allow myself to be present in my own skin – good, bad, ugly, flaws and all – to allow someone, in their insignificance, to derail or deter my progress or make me second-guess myself about doing what I know is right for me. In that moment I made a choice for ME to be true to myself no matter what she thought or felt my actions were about so that I wouldn’t later regret it. I knew that at some point I’d beat myself up for not doing what was right by my own standards, and that was more important that worrying about her feeling like she’d won in some way. Who cares what she thinks of me? What matters is what I think of me, and I patted myself on the back for not letting her actions change my character.