On February 1, 2019, I woke up with a fresh bounce in my step. I was ready to tackle the new things that stood before me. We are only a week into the new month and that invigoration has not left me. However, people who are close to me have slowed down. They have less enthusiasm and zeal. Why? Well trauma.
Last year was traumatic in many ways for me. I dealt with many emotional issues that could have really landed me in the hospital. But I did not. I am thankful for the fortitude and grace God has bestowed upon me. But a few people who were close to me hurt me last year. I did lose some relationships over it. But as I sit in it now, I look through a different lens.
I forgave all the people who hurt me. I worked through my anger. I am not sad. I am not depressed. I have said all I needed to say. I am ready to resume my life and move forward. But they are not. I realize that sometimes we make decisions and do things in the moment with little regard for the end result. Then when the end result hits you in the face. You feel the blow of it. You react. You slow down. You realize, OMG I really did that. Or this really happened.
It’s like waking up from a dream. But once you are finally awake, you realize that everyone else has moved on. You are still stuck trying to figure out what happened and how you ended up with the short end of the stick. Yes, I was supposed to get what I wanted right? Then you expect the others around you to grieve with you, empathize with you, pray with you, and most of all understand. When they don’t, you are surprised.
I have reaped for many decisions I made that hurt others. So please understand that I do not stand in judgement of anyone. But I have spent the majority of my adult hood empathizing for people who never empathized for me. People who disregarded my feelings over and over again. Yes, I accept responsibility for allowing it to occur multiple times.
But today my empathy tank is low because I have expended too much of my time, energy, and spirit on others. That breath of fresh air that I experienced on February 1 was my wind of freedom. Liberation from wallowing in other’s shit. It is your cross to bear now. I will not carry it with you anymore.
Just because we may be connected to people does not mean you are obligated to take on their shit and allow it to negatively impact your flow. I am not saying to be mean or non-supportive. I am saying to lovingly set boundaries. Listen, pray, encourage, and forgive. But let them deal with their stuff. Do not immerse yourself in it and take it on. Besides they didn’t take on your pain when they were hurting you. Now did they?
So to empathize or not to empathize? This is an individual choice based on the circumstances. Today I choose to empathize to a degree. I will not be held back nor hurt any further by people who refuse to deal with themselves. So if you are stuck and don’t want to heal, then you may receive less empathy from me. The choice is yours, just like it was when you chose that path to hurt others. Sometimes we just get what we put out. Only when its happening to us we look at it differently and expect a lot more understanding.
Fedora loves you. Peace