I am going through a six week training for my new volunteer position at Zoe Pregnancy Center. First of all - DO THESE PEOPLE NOT KNOW I HAVE A JOB, A FAMILY, and a LIFE?? Sorry - a little frustration at my hours of homework is slipping out a little. I don't know if it is about the time or about the fact that the training is very much in my face about things I have tried to hide from. Things I have used for coping mechanisms for years - like throwing the doily on the elephant in the middle of the room and calling it a table. That was a quote from my dear friend Alice that passed away a few years ago, but is still teaching me things today through her memory. I can call that elephant a table if I want, but the truth is, it is still an elephant and looming large in the middle of the room.
I worry about what people think. I spend WAY too much time worrying about how I said things and if I should have said anything at all ... or in the rare case I didn't say something, that I should have said something and what it should have been. I worry when getting dressed about the last time I wore this sweater and who saw me, cuz heaven forbid I wear the same sweater to choir two weeks in a row. None of those people have anything to do but worry about my repetition of clothing I am quite certain.
Mostly I worry that I am not good enough, smart enough, pretty enough, kind enough. I worry that if the real Michele shows up - I will chase all those around me away. I have had people I held near and dear that abandoned me. Maybe if I would have spent less time worrying about doing something wrong that would chase them away and more time just being real with them, they might still be here. Maybe they were just people fighting their own issues and it wouldn't have mattered what I did or said - they would still be gone. The problem is, I will never know the truth. I have chosen to separate myself from a few people in my life - usually because they seem toxic to me. So, I am assuming this is the case - I must have been something less than positive, something they wanted away from. I wish I knew the answer so I could try to change, try to not chase anyone else I love and care about away EVER.
BUT - here I am worrying about what others think. If a relationship fails it is not all one sided, is it? I know I called this one friend at least 3 times asking forgiveness and asking to start over. She was kind, but never called me again. The other relationship was more of an email one - we had not seen each other in years and years. Then we reconnnected. Email conversations are hard - sometimes something meant one way is taken another, etc... that whole thing was just a misunderstanding that grew out of control. I apologized and told them they were very important to me...but I never ever got a reply back. Abandoned and rejected, my two biggest fears in life. Maybe that is why these two particular relationships haunt me. I am going to try to let these go and release the pressure that if I could just figure out what I did wrong I can prevent it in the future. I am going to try to take off the masks of self protection and just be me. It will be hard, because I am scared. But, honestly, this hiding behind them isn't' working for me either. The Me inside is screaming to just let it all go and let's live!!! So, I will attempt to begin today and spend less time worrying about what others think of me and more time just being the me I want to be. Wish me luck!