On lessons, hard learned

It’s about to be my 26th birthday! Actually it’s about 2 months away, but if you’re younger than me– you learn as you get older that time will start flying by so quickly. I looked at the date today like– what? May’s almost over? GTFOH. So much has happened in this past almost year, I do not even know where to start. I’m about 2/3s finished with my Masters degree, that’s assuming by the grace of God I passed my second term. Questioning the status of my pending Master’s degree aside– so… too much has happened this year. Good things, bad things, and most importantly– lessons that are learned in the most obnoxious and painful route possible also known as the hard way. Literal growing pains hurt, but in my opinion, figurative ones hurt way more. Then again, once you get over that discomfort, certain lessons bring a much needed and way overdue sigh of relief. And without further ado, here are some things I’ve learned up until now in my short, almost-26 years of life:

Unequal friendships aren’t worth fighting for, and you shouldn’t feel bad about cutting your losses.
As I’ve previously stated before, breaking up with friends is a hard, but sometimes a very necessary thing to do. Perhaps one side is doing more than the other, and I’ve been on both sides of this problem, so I really do get it. I’ve found that in life, relationships will probably never be equal, and if you’re keeping score that in itself is a start to a bigger problem. However, there are some friendships that are so imbalanced you just need to let it go. Whether you’re the person who is being used, or you find yourself wondering why the other person is getting frustrated with you for not “_______ with them enough” even though you probably ______ with them more than people you actually like way more– but they don’t get it because their expectations go beyond the output you’re giving them. Honestly, who has time for that kind of effort if you’re really not into that friend as much as they are into you. I’m not saying, but I’m just saying.

But on a serious note, whether you find yourself putting too much effort into friendships and you’re tired– cut your losses while you can. Or if you’re the person who has a friend who is demanding way too much out of you because their perception of the relationship doesn’t meet yours– cut your loss if it’s not that important to you. Life’s too short for whiny acquaintances. No shade.

People need to stop being so reactive and start being proactive, especially when it comes to disputes.
If there’s anything I learned from my Organizational Behavior in Business class from undergrad, it’s that any and every miscommunication or falling out is a two-way street. People are so obsessed with playing a finger pointing game and wanting to be the innocent party, it’s so sickening and annoying. Let’s imagine for a second that you say something via text message and the recipient takes offense to it, even though you didn’t mean it in an offensive way. Simple thing, happens all the time when you communicate in an impersonal way where context is open for interpretation. Here are several ways in which it could/should play out:

  • The sender could get mad because the recipient got mad, which completely does not acknowledge the other person’s feelings and usually just drags out the argument.
  • The sender could try to explain how they didn’t mean it in the way that the other person took it, and apologize for the miscommunication– rarely happens.
  • Recipient won’t even tell the sender that they’re offended and just acts accordingly and proceeds to ignoring the other person without addressing the problem, which just creates another problem.. which then makes small issues bigger than they ever need to be.
  • The recipient, prior to getting mad, could assume that maybe they’re jumping to conclusions and ask whether the sender meant it in the way that this person initially thought it meant, thus avoiding that awkward moment in the first place. This is assuming that this communication is between people with a somewhat good relationship, because why would a logical person assume someone meant the worst thing ever? This is asking too much, because people are so irrational..
  • Anyway, you get my point here. Obviously, there are many more scenarios that could play out here, and in anything in life it is way too easy to just finger point to the other person and say you did this, you did that.. so easy. I think there’s something to say for people who acknowledge their part in any dispute, without accounting for who did this and that. Next time you get in an argument, if you can attempt to say “I” statements instead of “you” statements, you’ll probably solve things much quicker or at least come to some agreement. Or not. Some thangs ain’t worth fighting for, y’all… which another topic for another day.

    You can stop blaming your parents now.
    I think we can all say something about what our parents did wrong and how they should have done this and that for you. The older I get, the more I realize I need just let it go with my parents. I love them, I know they really tried their best. I get that some people, have had traumatic and downright abusive things happen to them, but I’m not referring to that. I’m talking about people that want to hold a grudge against their parents for not putting them in group sports or didn’t push them hard enough or their parents were too strict or they’re “damaged” because of their parents’ divorce or they were a latch key kid who was alone all the time. I get it. I’m sure the majority of people can find some kind of fault in their parents efforts. However, you have a choice in your life to hold grudges or not, and honestly the person persistent grudges hurt the most is you. There’s a certain level of enlightenment, where you realize that you have the choice of looking at things differently. Perception is reality, and how you feel about things can change as easy as you looking at things differently. Looking back, I just see people who tried to raise a daughter as best as they could, and that’s what matters most. I say this, because no person is perfect, and imperfect people grow up to be imperfect parents… and I like to believe that people do try their best in important situations. There are so many inner demons and issues that parents go through, and to be empathetic to them on a human to human level really is relieving for me.. rather than to think of them as selfish people who could have clearly made better choices. It’s so easy to look back and see errors, but you also need to move on and not let things hold you back, because after a certain point the only person holding you back is yourself.

    Don’t think you can pick up and leave for a new place without thinking you won’t leave a piece of your heart behind.
    I think prior to me leaving for London, I didn’t think I’d miss my friends and family so much. I feel like I took advantage of having my loved ones just a quick drive or impromptu flight away, because I really miss everyone back home so much more than I ever wanted to admit. Don’t get me wrong, I have met wonderful people here that’ll probably never get deleted from my Facebook friends list (JK, guys), but it doesn’t compare to having history with so many people. I’ve been through some thangs with friends back home, and I miss having that support system and being around people that genuinely love me because it’s so difficult sometimes when I need a good friend that’s truly on my side. And I’m not talking about any friend, I’m talking about the kind of friend that has seen you without makeup and looking homeless AF, and still publicly hangs out with you. The kind of friend who hates your man when you hate him, and will be right next to you shoving your face with ice cream while discussing your temporary hate of all men, and will still be by your side when you love him again. I’m talking about the kind of friend that knows your deep and dark secrets, and, surprisingly, doesn’t judge you for it. I’m talking about the ride or die friend that’ll get into some mess with you at the last second and doesn’t ask any ridiculous questions like “are you going to get arrested for this?”. Some people just aren’t that down. Sometimes, I just need that friend. Like, it’s rare, but it does happen. Sometimes Skype doesn’t cut it really, because my heart is deep in the heart of Texas.. and some other parts of the US. Anyway my point is, I miss my loved ones. I can’t wait to see you all soon!

    This 25th year of my life has been.. interesting in a good way. I have loved myself, I have hated myself. I have met awesome people that taught me more things than a classroom ever has, and that kind of education is priceless. I’m right at that point where I have to grow up, although I’m still finding ways not to. I’m serious. But I love myself at 25 way more than any other year, and some interesting things are about to happen! Maybe I’ll blog more about said things. I say this every year, I think.. we’ll see how I feel tomorrow. Don’t hold your breath.

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