In my twenties, I learned what it means to come from a dysfunctional home. Most homes are dysfunctional in some way. My home was good, but not perfect.
I went to counseling and learned a lot about how to handle my own reactions; how to see things more clearly. Those years of counseling also helped me see that our world is a mess. I began to get discouraged.
No matter how much work I did on myself, trying to get emotionally healthy and balanced, the people around me were rarely doing the same hard work and I still had to deal with them. Why couldn’t we all just get healthy at once?
I had a choice. Should I get bitter and judge everyone harshly? Should I become sarcastic and jaded and mean? That seems like a lot of work and unhappiness.
I’m really trying to avoid that yucky line that is creasing the spot between my eyebrows. I wonder if I can reverse the work it’s already done if I learn to relax?
Now in my thirties I’ve decided I can’t go through life constantly looking for the messiness in people and discarding them if they disappoint me. No one would be left! And if I get discarded every time I disappoint someone, well…
Anyway, it’s exhausting to think of constantly hiding my own mess so others will like me. Working on it or not, there are still some messy corners.
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I’ve decided to try to embrace the messiness of other people and hope they will also embrace my mess. They aren’t like me; they probably don’t want to be like me. Other people aren’t typically going to make my life easier or smoother, but they often make me happier.
It’s when I get all tied up in knots because their messiness comes out that I get unhappy and that blasted line appears again.
Don’t get me wrong, if you add more unhealthy drama to my life than joy, I’m not stupid. I’ll withdraw myself and allow you to create your own chaos without me. But if you bring anywhere near as much joy to my life as you bring messiness, I’ll probably keep you.
I’ve decided to like people.