Well, I’ve been MIA for a while. Needed to get through the holidays. I don’t do holidays well and this holiday season has been especially tough. But, I’m back and am ready to get back to blogging.
I had a rather interesting event to happen yesterday. While browsing though my Facebook News Feed, I came upon a post made by an acquaintance. It was about people you could count on. Reading it made me think of a friend I lost during the political season. We have been friends for many, many years and met when we were both Stampin’ Up! demonstrators. While we have never met in person, I considered her a close friend. I won’t go into details, but she and I differ greatly in our political beliefs and after making a rather simple comment to a post of hers one day, she actually told me to “STFU already”. And she did so publicly. I had reached the breaking point — tired of being called names and being told that I was stupid, so I finally unfriended her. And it has bothered me ever since. But, back to my original thought. His post reminded me of losing my friend and I commented that I wish I had seen that post a couple of years earlier (thinking of the times in the future that I might be put down by her for my political beliefs.) Next thing I knew, this friend was calling me out and accusing me of posting about HIM. Far from the truth. However, after the fit he had, I tend to believe that perhaps the bit dog was hollering (as we tend to say in the South). After a couple of back-and-forth responses, he sent a private message apologizing and saying I had been right in saying that he had taken my comment out of context. And then — he removed his comment from Facebook where he had accused me of talking about him, leaving my response which made me look like a loon, talking to myself. (I hate when people do that. Grow a pair and stand behind your comments. If you’re not going to do that, then you ought not to be making them in my opinion.) But, that’s ok. Some people can’t or won’t stand behind whatever they say.
And of course I thought about it all night. Who would expect anything less?
In thinking it over, there is one thing that I have learned from this, for sure —– I am too damn old for this sort of nonsense. And that’s exactly what it is — nonsense. At one point, this person meant a LOT to me. About two years ago, I realized that he was not the person I had thought he was and we decided to just remain friends. It’s been a struggle to do so, but I’ve tried. When he gets lonely or when he wants some information about someone, he’ll call or contact me. He knows all the right lines to feed me to make me think he’s sincere and like some darn 16-year old girl, I believe him. Then, the next day, he’s back to the same old crap. It’s been a real roller-coaster and my emotions have been all over the place. Get smart, Betty. He’s a user. He’s a schemer. He is toxic.
Well, one thing led to another and the following comments are what I posted earlier today on Facebook, not only about the incident, but about me and my thoughts in general.
I am not perfect. I never have been perfect and I never will be perfect. I dare not claim to be perfect in any way, shape, form, or fashion. In reality, I am so far from perfect that it’s sad. BUT………….I try. Lord, do I try and it’s killing me.
I am opinionated. I speak my mind. I stick up for myself. I wasn’t always this way, though. There was a huge part of my life where I was a people-pleaser. I would do anything necessary to prevent any type of disagreement. If I knew I was right, but if stating that meant there was going to be a disagreement, I would cower in the corner and just agree with you. I would eat my feelings and convince myself that those feelings were not true feelings. But, no more.
I no longer cower in a corner and agree with something that I don’t believe. And, at times, that causes problems. But, that’s ok, because I’m a big girl now. I have discovered the aisle at Wal-Mart that sells those big-girl panties and am quite adept at pulling those suckers up and moving on. I will no longer let anyone walk over me. I will no longer let anyone accuse me of something that I have not done without speaking up for myself. You may not like it. You may not be man or woman enough to admit that you were in the wrong, but that’s Tough. I will not purposefully do anything to hurt you, but I will not let you walk over me. That’s just the way it is. I have learned to expect and accept consequences when I am wrong. I have learned to admit when I am wrong.
If I comment on something on Facebook, you can rest assured that the comment comes from my head and my heart. I do my own research. I think before I speak (99% of the time). I very seldom (hardly ever) rely on someone else’s meme or post to allow someone to believe that I feel a certain way. If I do use a meme, I will add my own thoughts to it. I am not a puppet. I love words and I know how and when to use them. There were many years when I was not allowed to have an opinion and using my words in any way would result in a physical fight. For that reason, I just didn’t use them. I am regaining my words and use them freely now. I always speak from my heart and my thoughts can be believed. They may not always be right. They may not always coincide with your thoughts. But, you should always believe that words spoken by me are words that I believe.
I have a heart. That heart has known great love. That heart has also known great sorrow. That heart has been stomped on, misused, taken for granted, and pure lied to. It has had knives plunged into it and twisted. It has always given second, third, and fourth chances. This heart has finally learned that it must be closed to some people once it has become convinced that they are toxic to it. It weeps when it is taken for granted. It longs for the way things “used to be” or for the way “it ought to be”.
I have always tried my best to be loyal. If I say I’m your friend, then I’m your friend. I will do anything I can to help you. I will always have your back. I will not let someone speak badly of you without being told they are doing so. I will try to be encouraging. I will always try to help you see the good in you when you cannot see it in yourself. I will listen. I will love you. My biggest problem has been that I am not a loyal friend to myself. I am trying my best to change that.
There was a time when I trusted no one. I have worked hard to learn to trust again, sometimes to the detriment of my mental health. You taught me how to trust and then you pulled the rug out from under me and showed me why I should not blindly trust you. I still struggle with things my head “knows” and things my heart “feels”. I am getting better at seeing and believing myself when I feel that the trust I have in you is misguided. I struggle with giving up. I always feel that you deserve one more chance and I have finally learned that there must be a cutting off point. Those times are hard because my heart says “just one more chance” and my head says “girl, you better get the hell out of here”. However, if I am your friend and lose trust in you, it is very, very, very hard for that trust to ever be regained. I can remain civil when I see you. I can be friendly if needed, but I will not trust you. It’s that simple. I just won’t trust you. And to me, without trust, true friendship is impossible.
There was a time when I was furious with God. I did not trust Him at all. I blamed Him for things that were not of His making. I had forgotten who He was. I had forgotten that He loved me, no matter what I did, said, or thought. I am slowly reuniting with God. I am learning to trust Him again. I am feeling loved by Him. And, THAT is a good thing.
While my past has not been an easy one, I realize that there are millions of others out there who have also not had an easy past. I am nothing special. I deserve no sympathy. I deserve no pats on the back for “being strong”. I am far from being strong. I do what I must do to get through each day. Sometimes, I make the right choices. Sometimes, I don’t. But, so far, I haven’t given up totally. I’ve been close. Oh, I’ve been so close. There was a time when it would not have mattered to me one bit if I had just gone to sleep and not awoken. I no longer feel that way, but if I’m totally truthful, it’s always in the back of my mind.
I have demons. Sometimes, those demons come out and truly haunt me. At those times, I have learned that I must forgive myself. There are things I cannot change and I can no longer torture myself over those things. I cannot forget them because they are such an integral part of me, but I simply cannot let them rule my life. If those things that haunt me can somehow come to a resolution, that would be wonderful, but that has to be put into God’s hands.
I have a wonderful family. My children and my grandchildren are true gifts from God. I have a sister I truly love. My extended family is a blessing to me. I have marvelous, loyal friends. My church family is a blessing. My “Hens” are what keep me together many times. I know how to laugh. I know how to have fun. I know how to love. But, most importantly, I have learned to stick up for myself. It know that it is up to Betty to take care of Betty. Trying to do that is quite a chore at times, but I believe I can do it. My head tells me that I am worth it. My heart yearns to believe it.
I am who I am and that is all that I am. Take me for what I am or don’t. That is your choice. You cannot change me. You cannot misuse me. You cannot abuse me. You will no longer be allowed to lie to me. No, I am not perfect. But I understand what love is and I’m learning about trust. And trusting you is something I no longer do. It’s that simple.