I had dinner with my aunt and uncle last week and we spent a good portion of our time talking about my messed up childhood and dilusional family. It really got me thinking about how I handle relationships and how my actions tie into how I was (or wasn’t) raised.
The fact is, we are all products of our environment. Great families or bad families; wealthy neighborhoods or fifth-wheel trailers near a border town; variations of abuse or picturesque childhoods – all of these things (among many) shape who we are and who we become. Some of us choose to cling to the bad and use these experiences as a crutch to excuse behavior in the present. Some choose to use them as reasons why they don’t behave in certain ways. Others just take it day by day.
I can attest to the fact that all of the above situations have shaped who I am and who I will be in the future. However, I’ve come to realize that the largest influences in my life are the people I meet along the way. As someone who comes from a very volatile and disjointed family, relationships have often filled that void for me. And I realize that is often more responsibility than some people can handle. I just wish I could learn to realize it before I invest too much and get seared to a crisp.
You see, getting ousted has happened to me so many times, as far back as I can even remember, that over-investing is clearly a pattern of behavior I need to curb. My best friend from high school dropped me like a bad habit right after graduation. An entire group of girls I was friends with for 6-7 years just didn’t like me at all, and vice versa. Others were just waiting for me to screw up once so they could find a window of opportunity to blow me off. I don’t even want to get into my family abandonment issues. Unfortunately, this is just a small sample, but I attribute these episodes to a handful of reasons:
- Sometimes (most of the time) I’m just not good enough.
- Sometimes I mess up and my apologies are not good enough (always).
- Sometimes people just suck (a lot).
- Sometimes life just happens (which I think is the laziest excuse – ever).
- Sometimes we are only friends of circumstance (total waste of time).
- Sometimes people are just incredibly self-centered (yes, we all are to some extent – I know this).
But, aside from the notches on my bedpost of relationships past, I do genuinely cherish the people I’ve met, value those I’m friends with now (both in real life and virtually), and I can’t wait to see what comes next. My life is never too full for my relationships. I feel like I can never have enough.
(P.S.) I edited the hell out of this and cut some meaty stuff. Self-censorship is a bitch.
(P.P.S.) This isn’t my typical blog post so I do apologize for that. I chalk it up to having too much time to think the past few days. That usually leads to dangerous things and/or numerous unfinished projects…