THERE ARE NO MISTAKES, only opportunities.
The book: Bossypants by Tina Fey
At times, I feel invincible. I’m always starry-eyed at life, which makes me feel like I’m soaring. Inevitably, though, a gentle reminder always humbly brings me back down to earth. Sometimes my feet land softly; other times it’s a loud thud.
Today, while soaring through the New York winds, a quick conversation had me float back down to the rich, brown earth. As soon as I landed, I knew I should’ve been here much earlier. It never feels good to know you’ve hurt a friend, much less a friend with whom you really hope to build a lifelong friendship. All summer I had been wrestling with that heavy burden: knowing that something was off between us, yet I never worked up the courage to broach the topic. I felt detached, then defeatedly accepted that things might not be the same again, rationalized in my head that nothing is consistent, and went on with my life.
If I sound as if I’m being dramatic, I do not feel that I am. Friendships are not to be taken lightly, especially if your actions occurred at the expense of someone’s feelings. When you are close friends with someone, the two of you feel invincible against the world. There are friends, and then there are friends. WIth those friends, you two would never think that you’d be capable of ever letting that person down.
But alas, you are human. And humans are prone to err. You, especially you (me), are not above that particular facet of humanity.
As much as I tout being present and living in the moment, I need constant reminders that the world exists outside of my world, and that my actions have consequences. My actions affect others, whether I intend for them to or not. It is not self-deprecation; I am not stating these things to elicit condolences nor praise. I am trying to come face to face with that harsh reality that yes, I am selfish, and yes, I do selfish things. I am acknowledging this to work towards the goal of decreasing the frequency with which I do these selfish things.
The scariest part to me is that the closer you become with people, the more likely these moments are to occur. Maybe that’s why it’s easier to keep people at arm’s length. I am fine with being hurt. I never stay hurt for long, because those emotions are fleeting. To hurt someone else, though, no matter to what extent, always leaves an indelible print.
But, there are no mistakes, only opportunities, yes? An opportunity to strengthen a relationship, an opportunity for self-growth. You can always be kinder, be more compassionate, be more empathetic, be more conscious of the words you say and the actions that you take.
Then you can work on your friendships, all of them, the ones that matter.
You need the ground in order to lift up and soar. Then, you need the ground in order to land. I can soar, but I’d rather be on the ground with you.
Why did I switch from the pronoun “I” to “you”? Perhaps at some point during the process, I felt “you” would give me a certain sense of distance.
After sleeping on it, I immediately feel a difference between my state of being and when I wrote this. That four hour difference provides that distance in which I reside so comfortably. Honestly, I don’t like this post at all. I don’t like what I’ve written, I don’t like the subject. But the point is to capture every state of being, including great discomfort.
Memory Moment Thirty Six.
Next week: The Creative Habit by Twyla Tharp