I have friends and chosen family who live all over the US. One of my friends even lives in Poland. It’s not unusual for me have such a geographically expansive group in my life. For a school project in high school we had to get to know someone from another country and learn about their culture. I was e-mail friends with my assignment for years. We lost touch when she changed e-mail providers. I still think of her, sometimes, and hope she’s doing well. I preface this blog post that way because I want y’all to understand I have lots of love and support in my life.
A few years ago I had someone in my inner circle that I loved hard, but I lost myself loving them. I looked in the mirror and saw someone who lost her voice in order to give this person one. How did I even get here? I never thought I’d be in such circumstances. I’m strong as I was raised to be, and yet I’m here. What in the world? I had enough self awareness to call my chosen brother and sister. I balled to both of them. They gave the strength, support, and love to cut ties with this person. They loved me through the grieving process of doing so. Anytime you chose to cut ties with someone who you love and is important to you: there’s grieving. Anyone who tells you differently is lying.
I blamed myself. I went inward as if I deserved some kind of punishment for allowing this person’s behavior. What a lie I was telling myself. I did NOTHING to deserve such awful behavior and treatment. You don’t treat anyone you love and care about the way I was treated. I write this blog post for anyone dealing with a person who treats you badly in your inner circle. Let me dispel some lies about what love, care, and respect look like. Love, care, and respect are not:
- body shaming: you are beautiful just as are you are. You are enough just as you are. You are loved just as you are right now. Full stop.
- belittling your dreams: the people who truly love you and want the biggest, fullest, life for you will cheer on your dreams.
- control: everyone who loves you truly will never try to control you.
- name calling
- living in constant fear of that person
- making you feel small and not enough: you are enough. Full stop.
- bullying of any kind
You can cut ties with anyone who treats you badly. It’s possible. I’m living, breathing proof. Does it take courage and brave? You bet it does. You have everything you need to do so inside of you. I promise. People need you in their lives and they love you. I promise that’s true. I also promise that someday you’ll be strong enough to tell your story to someone who needs to hear it.
The God I serve doesn’t waste experiences. Instead using every, single, one for good. I’m proof of that, too. How do I know? I’ve written about a time, today, I never thought I would. I am brave and strong. I have a feeling this one will have a life of its own. I hope so. I want my experience to encourage others. If you see yourself in my words today: I’m praying for you and you are loved. Don’t give up on yourself and your life. You deserve a blindingly, beautiful, full, life.
To the person this blog is about: I forgive you for the way you treated me. I will NEVER allow anyone to treat me the way you did, again. I know who I am and what I am not now. I am strong and brave. I am a warrior. Thank you for the lessons you taught me. I can put down the pain, now, and move forward.