Here I sit, at the doorway to another year, 365 days, 52 weeks,12 months. It seems a long time ahead, but it goes by so quickly. Thinking about the past year, I realise just how quick!
So much happened in 2017. I changed as a person…or perhaps I should say, I found the real me, the authentic me.
One event in the year caused this to happen, one event that, hopefully, I can now ‘shut the door on!
At the beginning of the year I felt in turmoil within myself. I was questioning a lot of ‘stuff’, but mainly my own integrity.
I was in a friendship that had spanned over 20 years, had been a huge part of my life. The friendship had been a great blessing to my life. I loved this friend dearly and I believe this love was returned. However, since 2014, (possibly earlier), certain things had taken place which had caused me to question this friendship and everything about it; had made me question myself, my thinking, sometimes my very sanity!
We had a couple of, shall we say, disagreements, although in all honesty they were massive ‘barnies’! Looking back I believe these usually happened after I had done something that wasn’t ‘in line’ with the other’s thinking or I had been spending time with another friend, (who incidentally is more like a sister to me). There was much more going on that I don’t feel I can talk about here; stuff that had me thinking about my own integrity, or perhaps lack of integrity. Stuff that was causing me to ‘talk about’ other people; stuff that was making me very critical of others. Stuff that I knew just wasn’t me! But I felt trapped.
Anyway, at the start of 2017 I had been having some counselling regarding another matter and during this time the situation with this friend had come out. I made a decision, something had to change. I had to change, things had to change.
By February my mind was made up following two things that happened, again not something I can share without revealing too much. I decided I wanted to cut myself from this friendship/relationship. Whatever it had become I no longer wanted it. It was a very painful time, for both of us. But during this time I knew it was the right decision for me and for my well-being. I had no regrets whatsoever.
I had to take responsibility for my own shortcomings and weaknesses. I had been living a lie; everyone looked at our friendship and I think, put it up on a pedestal! Like some perfect example of what a friendship should be, nobody saw the cracks, just the pretty picture. I had been the one to allow this person to have so much sway in my life. I hadn’t set any boundaries. I always said ‘yes’, I always agreed, I never stood up for myself, I never said ‘that’s wrong!’. Basically, I allowed my life to be engulfed by another person. The only way I could describe how I was feeling was like this…. I’d been kidnapped and I was suffering with ‘Stockholm Syndrome’. (Somebody else also said this to me.)
I had lost the real me – but I’m back now – it’s over!
I have no regrets about ending the relationship, I’m sad that it caused so much hurt and pain, but I had to do it.
It was the hardest thing I’ve ever done.
I feel so much stronger and wiser now, and more confident than I’ve felt in years. When your husband says, “I’ve got my wife back”, that has to mean something! Right?
I have learned so much through this painful journey. I have been ‘unfriended’ by some, which I am very sad about. People who, in the past, have told me how much they love and care for me…just ignore me now. But I have to let that go, it’s their choice.
Here are some of the things I’ve learnt:
- Don’t allow anyone to ‘hijack’ who you are
- Don’t always say ‘yes’
- Don’t be afraid to say ‘no’
- Don’t be afraid to say ‘I just don’t want to…’
- Don’t allow anyone to steal your joy
- Don’t be afraid of what is said about you
- Don’t EVER be afraid to be YOU!
- Just don’t be afraid!
This is what you are responsible for:
- Your words
- Your behaviour
- Your actions
- Your efforts
- Your mistakes
- Your idea
- Your choices
…and all the consequences of the above.
BEWARE THE HIJACKALS!
I’VE SHUT THE DOOR! I’VE TAKEN AWAY THE BRUSHES! I’M PAINTING MY OWN CANVAS!
AS WE STEP THROUGH THE DOOR OF 2018, WHAT DOOR DO YOU NEED TO SHUT TO BE ABLE TO MOVE FORWARD!?
This year will not end
Like last year at all.
You have learned to be free.
You have learned to be strong.
You have held on to light
When the night was too long.
You braved many fears,
You learned a new song.
And through all of these valleys
You have learned to stand tall.
This year will not end like last year at all.
– Morgan Harper Nichols]