Happy Saturday, friends, and a belated happy new year! Since the ball dropped, so to speak, I’ve barely had chance to set up my laptop and do much of anything with this little blog of mine — and when I say I’ve barely had a chance, I mean I could’ve if I’d been bothered. I spent the new year in Cornwall with my dad, frolicking drunk as a sailor amongst the pubs around the harbour, dressed as an Oompah-Loompah (as you do), and since returning it’s been non-stop work!
In my less-busy moments, I’ve been reflecting on the year as a whole — and I had a hell of a lot of time to do just that during the few months I spent unemployed, so you could say it hasn’t been a great year. I’ve been dumped, I’ve been bullied, and I’ve hit some extremely low points. But I’ve also had some fantastic blogging opportunities, met someone I want to spend the rest of my life with, traversed some metaphorical choppy waters, and made a ton of memories.
And I couldn’t have come out okay on the other side without shedding a LOT of dead weight.
It’s okay to admit that some people, some friendships, aren’t good for you, and it’s okay to cut these people off for your own sake. It’s just horrible when you’re the one who is cut off, and I think that’s what happened to me last year.
A short but close friendship ended suddenly at the end of summer, and to this day, I have no idea why. I didn’t even know anything was wrong until I realised this person had ignored my messages about ten times in a row. And it didn’t matter how many times I reached out to this person, how much I implored them to talk to me, tell me what I did, try to work through it to preserve the friendship, how much I wanted to be there for them with whatever they were going through — they didn’t want to know. Radio silence.
It really, really stung. To this day, I have heard nothing from them and it still really sucks when I think about. You know when you break up with someone and you can’t help but think about them, see them on social media, they show up in your dreams and it seems like you just can’t stop worrying over the situation? That’s what it was. And it was incredibly cruel.
It took a while, but I eventually realised that a real friend doesn’t cut you off and have nothing to do with you with zero explanation. I’ve analysed my behaviour with this person to the closest measurement and I don’t think I did anything wrong; I know that’s not my call to make, and that this person has a right to socialise with who they want to, but I feel like I’ve been slapped with a gleaming neon TOXIC sign, and that’s no way to be treated by someone who once called themselves my friend.
I struggle with letting go of things and I don’t deal well with abandonment — not two characteristics that gel well with a person whose two serious relationships have consisted of being cheated on and consequently getting dumped. Those sorts of things really contribute to your sense of self-worth, and dwelling on them like I do, for months, even years, to come, has a fairly effective way of grinding you down. As a result, I know I can be a jealous, paranoid and possessive partner.
I met someone knew during the summer of last year. Without waxing lyrical, I feel that I could spend the rest of my life with him, and anything I’ve felt for anyone else before has paled so much in comparison that they are like ghosts to me now. I don’t want to spoil this by being that paranoid, jealous person, but more significantly, I don’t feel the need to be that way. I feel supported and important to someone else like I never have done before, and it’s made me realised that I am not unlovable like I once thought.
Settling For Second Best
Kind of connect to the first two things in this post is the fact that I’m very used to settling, with pretty much every element of life. Whether it’s being a low priority in friendships and relationships, being relegated to the position of Resident Doormat at work, deciding against wearing what I want to wear or doing something new I want to do for fear of being ridiculed or laughed at — it’s all a case of old habits dying hard.
The last year or so, amongst all the bad stuff, has seen me slowly realise how silly that mindset is. There is absolutely no reason for me to settle for being second best in anyone’s life, especially my own: if someone wants to be my friend, they’ll show it; if someone wants to be in a loving relationship with me, they’ll prove it every day. And if I want to wear a bright red fluffy coat and big chunky Doc Martens, or try pole fitness and finally learn how to play the ukulele that’s been shoved to the back of my wardrobe and document it on Instagram (all viable options I’ve thought about for this year), then I should go ahead — if anybody laughs, who the hell cares? Rubber, glue, ya know?
My confidence was really knocked last year, but bit by bit, I’m building myself up to where I want to be.
What will you be leaving in 2018?