I feel like, I'm always doing this reintroduction - because, the times in between my writing have been so sporadic. Nonetheless, I'm back. I've stepped away from writing for a while, because well - new mom life and then, mostly because I'm honestly tired of my words, my art being weaponized against me. I can't tell you how many times, someone has used my own words to try and harm me. It's disgusting and I'm over it.
Being vulnerable has N E V E R come easy to me and I mean N E V E R. Almost every time, I've chosen to open up and be vulnerable with someone - the wrong someone. They've used it against me, if it's former friends gaslighting me, my ex husband making jokes about mental health - acting as if I'm crazy. Fake friends twisting things I've said and lying for the approval of others and so on and so on.
As far back as I can remember at least. To be fair, we'll say January 2001. I think that was a pretty big focal point for when things started to change for me. My foundation was shaken, when I lost my grandfather and to be completely honest, I don't think I ever bounced back. (I know, I know 19 years - let's not put a time limit on grieving).
For most of my life, well most of my dating life and especially after being divorced at such a young age. I vowed to never march to the beat of a man’s drum again, anyone's drum but my own. I vowed to not get caught up in a man’s world, anyone's world - so much that I forgot about my own. I stayed up late nights, making these promises with my best friend. And yet, the enabling part of me resurfaced and I found myself right back to my usual pattern of being “Jessica, the enabler, the fixer." Many of you know (and probably more of you don't if you're not following and because, it's not something I discuss often) my husband has a child, from a previous marriage. - See, Married With Children That Aren't Yours As, I watched my husband pleading for a relationship with his son. I would watch him go from this happy go-lucky guy, to furious, to broken to defeated in a matter of minutes during a conversation with his son's mother. It would break my heart. I wanted to help. I wanted to fix this for not only him, but for his son - who deserved to have two parent's who could effectively communicate. So, after being harassed on Instagram/Facebook - the Empath in me, the enabler, the fixer against the advice of those who were more aware of the person they were dealing with - I decided hey, let me be the bigger person and extend an olive branch. Boy, was I wrong. I should've NEVER opened that door, it is one of my biggest regrets in life (and I was married at 19 and joined the Navy). You ever wish you never met someone or that you had a time machine, to go back and continue to act as if someone didn't exist? Because, I have mastered the art of ignoring. Some people, just aren't worth your energy. They don't have peace and so, they don't want anyone else to either.
It wasn’t until after much self reflection and a multitude of pro/con lists, I realized I was enabling the broken child in myself through all these other people, I wanted to fix. I was subconsciously trying to fix them in hopes of fixing myself. All the times, I'd wished someone were there to help me out, to be a shoulder for me to cry on, to be the voice to speak up for me. - It was me, it was always me. Granted, I do want to help others, sometime's to a fault but, I felt so strongly about it because, it was about me.
How many of you have realized you are subconsciously trying to heal yourself in helping others?
It was the betrayal that blessed me, she said. Have you ever been betrayed by someone? I have. I've been betrayed by so many people, I started thinking it may have been me with the issue. I started thinking have I possibly done things to deserve the deceit I was receiving. Did I put myself in situations for this to happen, or could it just possibly be karma? Am I finally reaping something I had sewn and had long forgotten about?
I can count how many times, I've been betrayed by people I trusted. I'll give you a few different scenarios - because, I think this is just crazy. 1) I thought I had a friend, we were "friends" for many years. One year around holiday season, I was rushing around visiting so many people that I did not link up with them. When, I didn't link up with them, this put ultimate betrayal in play. - This person, lied on me, befriended someone who was trying to harm me, slept with my ex, threatened me, lied on me again & ultimately tried to assassinate my character. Crazy right? When I asked them, what I had done to deserve such a betrayal, they simply said - "nothing, I was upset that you didn't come to see me like you'd said."2) I'd befriended someone who wanted to be me. It was evident in so many ways, yet I completely ignored it. She made up a story about me trying to get with the guy she was dating at the time. It wasn't until later that, I realized I had been lied on; because, I never even met the guy or knew his real name. We laughed about it, once we put two & two together. 3) I was married to a completely different person than I thought I'd married, we'll just leave that one there. Talk about a betrayal; ha. 4) The last and most recent betrayal, I opened my heart, my family, my home to someone. I gave them shelter, refuge, clothes, food, a safety net; I would've given them the shirt off my damn back. In fact, I think I had before. And man, let me tell you, if you don't pick up the phone for some people it is obviously a trigger and a reason to usher in, you guessed it - BETRAYAL.
Am I to blame for their betrayal? No. Am I to blame for being too trusting? Eh, that's a tough one. I could've been more diligent in choosing people to befriend. However, they also could have been better people. It's hard to make an assumption on who is right or wrong in these type of situations. People will only use you as much as you allow them to, so self-awareness plays a big part in that. I can't say whether or not they were wrong or I was wrong in allowing them in my life. What I can say is, I've been learning discernment with each of these situations. I've taken lessons from each of them & I am learning to use better judgment. Honestly, some of these people probably didn't even look at their actions as betrayal & that's important too. You have to befriend people who have the same levels of loyalty and respect as you do.
As much as each one of these betrayals through me for a loop, in the end it was the betrayal is what blessed me, sis. Although, these people preyed on me while I was praying for them, I am still going to come out the victor because I allowed myself to do what was right in my heart. My blessings will still be large and bountiful. Don't allow anyone who has betrayed you or been disloyal to you STOP you from being you. Be mindful, have discernment but don't close off your heart. What are something's that people have done to betray you? How have you dealt with the betrayal you've faced in your life?
Poison (n) -
We too often surround ourselves with poison. We allow toxic and poisonous people to inhabit our space. We fill our minds with poisonous thoughts, we indulge in poisonous behavior and we look at it as normal. We often try to decipher why our spirits aren't filled with the positive energy we are looking for and why depression and anxiety seem to consume us; but we never look at the toxicity we allow into our lives.
Toxic and volatile relationships, toxic jobs, toxic atmosphere's, it's almost impossible to breathe any sense of relief when we are engulfed in these ever so suffocating habits. So, you ask how do you move forward? How do you let go of that toxic relationship that you're so used to because you're afraid of branching out, or maybe you're comfortable, or maybe you enjoy toxicity. How do you quit that job that doesn't pay you what you deserve and also makes you wish you could just catch the flu for a week so you didn't have to go in. How do you tell your friends their problems are draining you and if their boyfriend keeps cheating on them to just leave? You just do. You have to find time for yourself, time to breathe, time to acknowledge this toxicity. Sometimes, we are so used to toxicity consuming us, we don't even realize why we're suffocating.
It's is 16 days into New Year. Normally, when the new year rolls in - I take a look at all the things, I don't want to bring in with me before the end of the year and I make a decision. This year, was different. I had already let go of so many toxic behaviors, friendships and loved ones that the only thing left to look at was myself. I'd dropped everything that was causing me to feel smothered that the only thing left was myself. I'd let go of jealous friends. I'd let go of behaviors that would bring poison into my heart. I'd let go of loved ones who were draining me but never replenishing. I can't tell you how freeing that is. For the first time in a long time, I started to just deal with and worry about myself. Although, I still dabble a bit in situations - I've learned the art of disengaging and that's freeing. Letting go of all the poison in your life and allowing yourself to heal, is one of the greatest things I could have done for me. What are you holding onto? What toxicity in your life is weighing you down?
Today, I acknowledged something I had been looking over for some time now.
jeal·ous - ˈjeləs/ (adj.) feeling or showing envy of someone or their achievements and advantages.
Jealousy - let's talk about jealousy. What is jealousy to you? Most of the time I hear, well I'm prettier than this person or I make more money. I'm smarter, I'm in better shape, I have longer hair, I drive a newer model car, I have more freedom, I have the ability to do things they can't. This person likes me more than they like them, I got the job they wanted, I slept with whomever they liked and the list goes on...
Rarely, do I hear that jealousy has to do with the way people love you. Seldom, do I hear people are jealous because the heart a person possesses or the character, their charisma, their willingness to persevere through obstacles in their lives. Today, out of twenty five years on this Earth, it hit me. The majority of what I've witnessed and experienced were not the materialistic things people reflected their jealousy on but the intangible things that they wish they could get.
I realized that most of my life had been saturated with people who were jealous of the way other people loved me. People who were jealous of the fact that I could overcome obstacles that would have torn them apart, people who pretended to be praying for me but were preying on me. You hear me, sis? Pretending to be praying for me, but we're preying on me.
I had unknowingly surrounded myself with people who had no good intentions for me. They were just eager to find out how and why people were loving me the way they were. How I was overcoming so much, how I continued to keep a smile on my face while things were coming apart around me. How did I get there? How did I not see it before? It was like an epiphany.
Why were there so many people in my circle who weren't in my corner? Why were there so many people who wanted to sabotage relationships I had with other people? They didn't understand why they could love me as they did and not feel the same about them. It hit me like a ton of bricks, a light bulb went off, a boulder fell on my chest. This had always been the case for so many people I allowed in my life. They were just there to observe. I had done this to myself. I had family like this, friends, relationships, I'd seen it before. Beware of the people who serve no purpose in your life but to just try and find out why others flock to you. Steer clear of people whom are in your circle but not in your corner, the people who don't clap when you succeed. The people who criticize every move you make. Recognize the faces of those who pretend to love you but are truly snakes in the grass. Acknowledge the people who hurt you but don't apologize. The people who try to make your feelings invalid with excuses, a great friend of mine once said pray for discernment and accept what people show you rather than what they tell you and I have asked God for that ever since.
What are some characteristics you possess that you think make people jealous? Tell me in the comments.