Truth - It's okay to not be okay. If no one has ever told you that, or even more importantly, you have never said those words to yourself, there you go. Read it again and take it to heart. It is perfectly fine, and actually quite healthy to not always be okay. There will be turbulence, strife, and friction in our lives. It's those that embrace it and go through it collaboratively rather than in isolation that often make it out better, and quicker than who go it alone. Who do you go to though when you are the mediator for everyone else?

"The essence of being human is that one does not seek perfection" George Orwell

The hardest thing about being me is the externally perpetuated but self-inflicted plight of constantly striving to be perfect in every way. Every single day I push to give my all and the entirety of myself to others. In doing so I leave no grace for myself in the process. There's no room for error. There's no place to be challenged. There's no time for improvement. I don't know why, but most definitely know why, making mistakes scares me so much. Why am I so afraid to let go, to get messy, to be a little random, and to honestly live carefree? What terrifies me so much about being wrong, not knowing where to go, or what to say? Why do I pretend to be a person that is something less than whole when my entire treatment of others is to validate their humanity? It doesn't make any sense. How can I be kind to others but be so unforgiving to myself? I never allow myself to be free, to not care, or to be imperfect. I plan, make lists, and painstakingly prepare for all that is to come my way. Unforeseen circumstances, outside influences, and a constantly fluctuating existential crisis is the inevitable truth of the life we all contest with, and yet I spend my time, wallowing in worry, self-chastisement, and anxious embarrassment over the most insignificant things. I know I don't care about others' opinions of me and yet I do, to the point where it is a debilitating dilemma. I can be so comfortable mediating for others but cannot find the courage to do so for myself. All I want is to demonstrate the same sort of compassionate goodwill I work to give to others towards myself.  

More and more I have found myself disclosing the darker truths that I hold within me. My deepest fears, what worries me, my regrets, and all the anguish in between have come into play. It's been so empowering to be able to speak out loud that which lies beneath. There are so many things that I never talk about. Some of it is heavy, embarrassing, or just plain foolish but being to speak it out loud has been thoroughly liberating. What I have come to realize is this dastardly paradox persona that I have created for myself. I think because I am someone who often shares difficult stories, less than ideal moments, and some of the things that have impacted me people perceive me to be deep. In actuality though I think very few people know me beyond the perfectly picturesque and slightly messed up enough to be humanly relatable actuality I project. Being able to express emotions readily endears people to me but these days I have come to know that the very few have scratched the surface. I haven't given a new part of me in so long. My stories have begun to feel rehearsed. It's one thing to appear to be emotionally available and another to actually go to the darkest crevices of my human psyche. Even more so to speak those things out loud in a world that discourages vulnerability, authenticity, and clemency. That is what I have to do though. Continue to find those that get me to go deeper, to get real, and to not be the mediator for once but rather let myself be helped.

Being the person that others rely on for emotional support, to mediate, or just to sit and listen can be taxing. What amplifies the toll it takes on you is the lack of reciprocation. It's such a disorienting experience to be at the forefront of people's minds as someone they can always rely on but to be utterly forgotten simultaneously when it comes to your own hardships, issues, and ordeals. It's as if because you are usually the fixer, builder, and lifesaver that you, yourself, are incapable of needing help, requiring aid, or struggling. You're expected to be perfectly put together at all times so that at a moment's notice you can swoop in to the save the day from diabolical catastrophe for others, but never yourself. You cannot rest. You cannot have peace. You cannot be not okay. You have to be, not for you, but for everyone else. Of course we ask how you're doing to hear the answer, but on a certain level we also want to be asked the same thing. Show the same attentiveness given to you to me. Let me know that you care. Don't diminish the significance of what I go through because it appears I need help less often. It's not even remotely true. It just happens that I repress, hide, and solve most of my problems on my own without actually bringing it up. It's rather unhealthy but being worried others won't take you seriously because it's never you makes is an unnecessary burden to bear.

What I want is for more people to stop saying "here I am," and replace it with "there you are." Those are the people who mean so much to me. I want to be one of those people myself. Someone who doesn't always talk about themselves but instead seeks to empower, support, and value others with all that one has to offer. I want to appreciate people, express gratitude towards them, and demonstrate an unconditional grace. In our narcissistic individualistic self-centered society, finding those that genuinely show interest in others is a rarity. It's a quality or an intentionality that desperately needs to make a comeback. We have to care about those around us, even those we don't need to worry about. We can never know when our presence will make a difference. Check on your checkers, the mediators, and the gladiators of perfection in your life. I promise you, they need it. Whether that's your friends, family, or co-workers, check in and stay engaged in with them. Give them what they give you. Time to just vent, tell their truth, and to be affirmed. It doesn't take much but someone to pay attention, notice the little things, and to ask the questions that will get me to be real. We all need to have our moments of imperfection lest we actually believe ourselves to falsely perfect. We should never believe our own hype. We should leave room for improvement. X


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