I’ve always told my kids that it doesn’t matter what other people do; we are still responsible for our own actions and decisions. This foundational truth works great when it comes to hitting back, choosing nice words, etc. But, to be honest, as an adult I find this principle a little more challenging to live by than it would seem to as a child.
There are some relationships and situations in my life where I am beginning to weary. After years of humbling myself, offering love in the face of abuse, neglect and sometimes absolute silence, I am starting to tire of choosing to “be who I am regardless of what others choose to do.”
When does love become dangerous?
The line is beginning to blur. I know some who set huge boundaries at the slightest sign of pain, others who are patient and offer little bits of affection and time. Myself, I do my best to protect my heart while living a life of generosity. At this stage of life, however, I am beginning to wonder if I may have offered just a little too much.
I am broken.
As much as I would LOVE to tell you I’ve overcome my co-dependent tendencies, honesty mandates that I confess a sincere case of the “what if’s.” You know, what if I tried just a little harder? What if I just work on my communication? Certainly it’s my fault – what if I give up now and breakthrough was just around the corner…?
As much as generosity flows through my veins, I am beginning to discern that there may be some people in this world for whom there just isn’t enough. That it’s not so much that I am not enough, but that the chasm they function with could not be filled by the entire world.
They are broken.
There are some amazing people in my life. They are full of grace. Love. Forgiveness. Complete acceptance. They know my heart and are quick to forgive even before I apologize for my mess ups. There are those who love me for who I am. Are grateful for my time. Who appreciate what we each bring to the table. Such friends require so little while others expect more than I can give and that’s not even enough.
I love them so much. There are no words. But it may just be that nothing I can offer would ever be enough, and I might completely lose myself in the effort to maintain the impossible.
Maybe when I stop chasing those who do not want to be loved, I might just learn to love myself…