“A friend is someone who knows the song in your heart, and can sing it back to you when you have forgotten the words. ” – Unknown
I believe that people should express more often what they stand for – for what they know and believe in today. Too many times I was way too scared to express my opinions and feelings just because “I might not be right.” Who says what’s right and what’s not? I found out that “right” means something different for each of us. We might find a tribe that sees life the same way we do, but many people won’t agree with our truth. So what?
I am tired of hoping to be liked while hiding myself rather than saying my truth and accepting to get separated from those who don’t agree with me. The irony of life is that, in one-to-one friendships I was always 100% honest and open, no fears of exposure at all. And despite the fact that I put myself out there with worries, successes, doubts, joys, fears, many of them decided to go away. I never found out the reasons why, suddenly, I was not that great friend I believed I had been. They simply stopped writing and calling me.
I wondered for countless days and nights if I did something very wrong and as much as I am used to blaming myself for the unhappy moments of life, I couldn’t find any reason why a human being decides to break friendship for no reason. I gave myself 100%, listened to, encouraged and believed in them every time they needed and asked for. I was there every hour of the day and night – always trying to carefully listen to their love stories, come up with reasons to keep going in dark moments, or offered my knowledge to finish up a project. Yes, I also criticized sometimes their lack of empathy, understanding, enthusiasm and many more, I sometimes complained about my constant unhappiness and other times I talked about way too many philosophical topics. But as flawed as I am and as many mistakes I might have made, I would never agree with leaving without any notice a friend who was there for you anytime you asked and needed, that opened up with entire mind and soul.
I have always worked hard to become a better version of myself in order to be a great person and subconsciously, to please others: less critical, more understanding; less complaining, more grateful; less emotional, more rational. Yes, thank God, all of these helped me. I got to increase positivism, gratefulness, self-knowledge, understanding of human behavior, but it was still not enough for people to like and accept me as I was. There’s always something to work on, isn’t it?
For some people we are never good enough, smart enough, happy enough, and some people asked me to be in a way I would never ever want to be. Yes, I am sometimes very emotional and a homeless street scene can make me feel deeply compassionate and sad. Yes, I am sometimes very critical, though my tolerance increased vastly. Yes, I complain sometimes because I see too many things that I and us, as humans, can do better.
If you are my friend, you are there, standing with my light and darkness. And as much as I strive to be light all the time, it’s not possible. I have my flaws, my doubts, my insecurities. I fall sometimes. But if you are not there to lift me up, to believe in me when I don’t and when staying back happens too many times, then you are not worthy to be my friend. I value you as a human, I wish all the best with all my heart, but you need to know that you are not worthy of my friendship. If it were for me, I would be friend with everyone, I would give myself 100% and I would help anytime I’d be asked. I answered to all the private messages and emails I got, counseling as good as I could all of those who needed me. I gave my time, my energy, my knowledge in uncertain moments. I hosted lots of people in my homes everywhere I lived. I answered to midnight calls. I ignored the lack of kindness and compassion of others and I kept believing in the good of people. I forgave them and I was there when they needed once again. But not everyone does that. The thing is that when I needed their presence and support, those whom I asked for help were not there for me.
So I need to learn to draw limits very precisely and be clear about what true friendship means to me and what I cannot tolerate at a friend’s behavior. I have never spent time thinking of that because I knew that I would always be there, leaving aside everything I had been doing, I would listen carefully and give the best advice I could have given. I thought all people would do the same.
I must now learn the difference between being there for everyone who needs me and being there for a few humans knowing that they will do the same for me.
Even though I presume this post is addressed quite precisely to one person that might have disappointed you lately, I think it is not because of you… it is just harder to build lasting relationships of any kind, now more than ever. We think that friends are all over the place, online or offline, people leave now closer to each other than ever, we see people and meet new people all the time… we live in the age of social and material plenty… but this makes people less tolerant and more superficial. If one has something she or he does not like in others, even if it is small, it becomes huge when they think “hey, there are so many other people around… let me move on and try someone new”. Unfortunately, with this mindset, nobody will really be good enough for anyone and regrets come when it is too late.