Oh, did you know that I have all the answers. If you are having difficulties I can listen, be there and make you feel better. I am loyal, and I will use all my energy to help you change your life so that you can be happier and more fulfilled. I will think about you constantly, be there when you text or call and drop what I am doing so that I can listen to you. I will spend hours on the phone, in coffee shops and even evenings out listening to you. I will ignore the fact I am tired, or have any challenges in my own life and listen and react appropriately and try my very best to say the right thing that will move you past your current situation to a better place. I just have one request in all of this, don’t ask about me. Don’t challenge me to bring my true self into the interaction. You see in focussing on you I don’t exist, and I don’t have to see myself. I am a mirror and caretaker of you. I feel sad inside but if you are successful and happy then some of your happiness will come my way. One day, you will be happy and look at me with gratitude in your eyes and hug me and say ‘thank you for being there because I am so happy and you have been there for me every step of the way’. I wait for this moment. I can see it in the future, I can feel it, it makes me happy to think about it. I wait. And wait. But, our conversations start to become repetitive. It seems that once we solve one of your problems there is always another one, another drama, another challenge. I am there. I am helping. But, I am getting tired. I wonder how long this will take to make you better, because I am feeling so drained that I don’t have the energy to solve my own challenges. In my time away from you, I talk to my friends about you and after a while they start looking at their phones when I bring your name up. So, I start talking louder thinking maybe they are not hearing this very important information. ‘What is going on in your life?’ they ask me. My life? I will work on my life when I solve all these problems, I don’t have time for that. I become annoyed. Why don’t my friends want to listen to me talk about you? I tell you about it and you tell me that they aren’t really good friends and I agree. I stop seeing them as much and spend more time with you, because you really need me. I start feeling more sad. You seem like you are getting worse. Oh no, you are really having a hard time now, and I am exhausted. I wonder when you will see all the energy and time I am giving to you and turn and hug me. Because once that happens I will find peace, and then I can start working on my own life. In my sadness I start to spend more time alone writing in my journal. I write about the things that I would like to do for myself. And I start to write about my true feelings. You wonder what is wrong. I tell you I think I might need some time for me. You tell me that is not going to work for you, that you need help and ask me why I am not helping you. I tell you that I am tired. You are angry. I don’t like your anger so I start to move away from you. I tell my friends, they tell me that they told me so. I don’t like that. I am alone. I am sad. I come to a point that I can go further into my sadness and be lost forever or I can minute by minute, hour by hour, day by day start to find myself. It is so hard. So hard. Who am I by myself? Who am I without you to blame for all my shortcomings and cowardice? Who am I? What do I like, what do I want? I start writing more, asking myself hard questions about what I want and how I am going to get there. I start to remember what I want but I am scared to tell you. I am scared to be judged and humiliated, it is so much easier to talk about you instead. When I finally do get the courage to talk about what I really want in life, I am met with silence and a blank stare. I am hurt, but I can’t blame you. You don’t know me because I have purposely hidden myself. I wasn’t being honest, I wasn’t telling you my true feelings but instead agreeing with everything you said so that I could stay in hiding. We didn’t have real relationship, just an agreement in my mind that if I gave myself to you that you would keep me ‘safe’ and in hiding. You never agreed to this though, it was an agreement I made between us without asking you due to my own insecurities. It worked for me for a long time because you made me feel valuable, and you didn’t make me reveal myself by trying to get to know me. I would have kept the relationship going if I could, but I became so exhausted and sad that it was impossible. I had to change, I had to speak, I had to tell my truth. Not because I decided I wanted to, but because I knew and felt with every cell in my being that I had come to a crossroads in my life; I could either start the journey towards honoring my purpose by telling my truth, or stay silent and descend into the darkness forever.
My husband and I moved to Portland Oregon over 20 years ago with our 3 month old daughter. We were living in San Francisco and both working full time, but after we had our baby we wanted a different lifestyle. We had often talked about moving out of the fast pace lifestyle of the Bay […]
I feel like when I write I use one side of me, and when I create art I use the other. They are in many ways opposing sides. When I am drawing I could be in the middle of a construction site and the noise wouldn’t bother me. When I am writing I need complete […]