Day 144 – May 24th, 2018

Hi, hi!

So this week has flown by, Thursday’s dwindling to a close now and Friday is looming around the corner already! I’ve got a weekend of work coming up, but also tomorrow night, Adrian, Radha, Krish and I are going out to Drake Hotel, so it looks like it’s going to be a fun night!

But for now, it is time to talk about everything I’ve missed in the past week or so. I’m dreading it because it seems like there’s so much, but there really isn’t. And I’m also kind of dreading it because it’s in the past now and time’s gone on, so I almost feel like… there’s no point? But that’s not the point of these logs. These logs aren’t just here for me to record what happens to me on a daily basis. These logs serve to capture my life lessons, my realizations, and to document my growth.

Okay, I feel better about it now. Especially because that last point there ^ is what I’ve been dwelling on for the last couple days. There’s an idea that’s been with me for some time now, inklings and musings in the back of my mind. But I’ll touch on that later.

So… where do I begin?

I guess I’ll pick up where I left off last.

By the end of last week, I hadn’t quite realized it but the eighty hours of work I’d done in the course of the last two weeks was beginning to take its toll. Even though I wasn’t exhausted physically, I was drained emotionally and mentally with the amount of stuff that was going on at home with my family. Even though things kind of settled a bit, I don’t think I took the time to properly express or internalize what had happened the previous weekend with my mom over Mother’s Day, or how she nearly died on the highway, or her depressive episode.

It was an accumulation of stuff that inevitably led to me having a full on break-down in the middle of my shift on Saturday afternoon, something that hasn’t happened to me in a very, very long time.

Part of that accumulation though, was my friendship (or my perception of it) with Leila.

It all started from the previous weekend – I’d texted her about her hair, and she didn’t reply to a question I’d asked but of course, that was fine because we get busy or forget to text back and I myself am guilty of that too. And throughout the week, we hadn’t talked much and when we did, I kept getting the impression that something was off (and I attributed it to not being able to get her lotion to her, which I felt guilty for). But I let that be too, and chalked it up to the fact that we were probably just really busy throughout the week and that happens sometimes.

But then at the end of the week, I saw some tweets she’d either retweeted or tweeted herself that set some alarm bells off in my head. She retweeted: “don’t ever beg for a friendship or relationship with anyone. If you don’t receive the same efforts you give out… lose that contact b”, at first. And then a day later tweeted herself: “smh at people who don’t make the same effort anymore once they have new people in their life.”

That last one, I happened to be hanging out with Radha when I’d seen it. And I immediately felt my heart sink to somewhere near my feet. Was I neglecting old friendships? Was I not prioritizing Leila now that Radha and Adrian were in my life? Was that really how she felt? And why wouldn’t she just tell me this if that were the case? Hadn’t we always been honest with each other? Did I really hurt her to the point she was tweeting these things about me?

Those were all the questions that ran through my head. And then I immediately messaged her that night, telling her I hoped she had a ton of fun at the wedding she was attending the next day, as well as telling her I knew she was going to look amazing.

No reply. My guilt intensified. The alarm bells were ringing a little bit louder now.

The next day was the day of the wedding (and the day of my break-down). When I’d seen that she’d posted a snap (whilst I was hoping to receive some myself of her outfit and stuff), I replied to her story saying that she looked great. Once again, she opened it but there was no reply.

I spent the rest of my shift in a state of worry, brow furrowed as I paced through the department, my energy obviously off, barely smiling as much as I normally do. When I saw more snaps posted and still no reply, that’s when it hit me like a brick wall: Leila must have thought I was a bad friend. She obviously wouldn’t be acting like this if I hadn’t of done something wrong.

But by now, my guilt was also turning into defensiveness. I still couldn’t understand why she hadn’t just messaged me directly the way she always did when there was something she wanted to discuss with me. I know I could have just messaged her myself and asked her what was up and what was going on. But I was scared to ask. Those tweets hurt a lot more than I thought they would. I couldn’t comprehend why I was feeling as much as I was over a couple tweets and a lack of replies to my texts.

Why was I so afraid to ask her directly?

Because the root of my defensiveness, the root of my guilt, was the fear of the possibility that… she was right. Maybe I had been neglecting her. Maybe I wasn’t putting in the effort she deserved in our friendship. And that thought scared me more than anything.

Because, I pride myself on being a good friend. A solid friend. Some of my worst fears entail me finding out that I was selfish in any ways when it comes to my friendships or relationships with other people. That I could hurt someone. That’s the last thing I want.

I know I’m not perfect. But when it comes to the people I care about, I strive to be the best I can be for the people who rely on me. What if, in this case, I’d failed?

It was all so overwhelming. And right there, in the middle of the department while all these feelings were coming at me faster than I could handle, I broke down.

Lucky for me, I work with a bunch of amazing women who immediately were at my side to console me and offer me support without needing to know why or how. Marilyn and Sera took me over to the side and listened to what was going on with my family, my fears regarding my friendship with Leila, how tired I’d become from working as much as I had. They understood that it was hard for me to be strong all the time without letting everything out, once in a while.

They both suggested that I talk to her, but I was worried – she was leaving on vacation within days, and I wasn’t sure what that conversation would entail, and I didn’t want to be the reason that she didn’t enjoy this amazing trip she had ahead of her. So I decided I’d just go with my gut and let things happen as they did. I planned to let things settle for a bit, and hopefully have the conversation with her once she got back from her vacay.

But of course, the universe had other plans in store for me (thankfully).

It turns out, she wasn’t leaving the day after the wedding. I found this out because she did end up texting me back, and texting about the wedding. The only thing was, I didn’t quite know what to say without denoting the state I was in, so I let it be. While I was working though, when I’d checked my phone after coming off the floor, I’d noticed she’d called twice.

She usually doesn’t call, so I texted asking if everything was okay. And she said it was, but that she wanted to just talk before she left. So I told her I’d call her after I finished work.

I came home after a while (me and my dad had to pick up my mom and my sister from the station after they finished work too) and then I sat at my kitchen table wondering how exactly I was going to say what I needed to say. I told myself I was just going to go with my gut, picked up my phone, and called.

I’m so glad I did.

She started off by saying we hadn’t talked in a while and she wanted to know how I was doing with everything, with my family and whatnot. And I struggled a bit at first, but eventually I got to the point where I told her I’d recently had a breakdown and all the reasons why it’d happened, including the tweets I thought had been about me and the lack of reply.

She immediately assured me that those tweets had nothing to do with me – in fact, she launched into explanations for each tweet, as well as whom they were actually meant for.

As for the lack of replies, she hadn’t realized I’d asked a question in the texts from the weekend before, and as for the most recent ones, she’d been caught up in prepping for the wedding and whatnot that she hadn’t really had a moment to reply. She also explained she’d been feeling kind of “blah” throughout the week, which is why she hadn’t been texting much. Bottom line was, none of it had anything to do with me.

She apologized profusely for making me feel the way I did, and I admitted that I should have just asked her as soon as I saw the tweets, and addressed the situation right off the bat without jumping to my own conclusions. We both agreed that honesty and communication is always best when it comes to situations like these, and she assured me that there was no way she’d ever say anything like that about me without addressing it with me first.

It turned into a good conversation, and after we hung up she messaged right after to apologize once more. In the moments of the phone call and afterwards, I had some realizations that I relayed to her and that I’m going to write here now:

The reason I reacted as strongly as I did to what seems like nothing is because, when it comes down to it, I care deeply about Leila. I care very deeply about our friendship. In fact, the whole situation became very humbling to me, very eye-opening.

I advocate for communication and honesty so much, to everyone around me in regards to every one of their relationships. But in my own, I clearly still have ways to go.

Even if those tweets weren’t about me, and even if the lack of replies wasn’t intentional, the universe made its message very clear – don’t take people for granted. This whole misunderstanding revealed to me just how much I loved Leila, and maybe I haven’t been showing it as much as I should have as of late. I wouldn’t have reacted as defensively or guiltily as I had if I had felt 100% sure that I wasn’t taking her for granted.

I’m glad this happened. It showed me that we can grow together, and we’re in this for the long haul. It ultimately served to grow our relationship with one another too, and we’re in a good place. She’s currently having an amazing time on her vacation, and I can’t wait to see her once she gets back.

It’s been a while since I’ve been in that lower-vibrational frequency. But this also showed me that I can’t neglect myself and assume I’ll stay in a good headspace.

This past week has been so much better. I’ve had three days off in a row for the first time in a while, I’ve spent time with my friends and my family, and yesterday on my last day off I actually had the whole day to myself to just relax and unwind on my own. I started a new book on spiritualism, I ate good food, played some guitar hero, smoked some good weed and just vibed, which was exactly what I needed.

And today as a result, I got through a nine-hour shift and it felt like a nine-minute shift.

Well! I’m basically all caught up. I’m constantly learning that I am constantly learning. I’ll never stop. The moment I think I know everything, the universe will find a way to show me that I don’t by teaching me something new.

Which reminds me of one last thing I wanted to address before I go.

Now, this part is kind of hard for me because I myself don’t want to acknowledge this. To me, it feels like… a step back almost. A quick flashback of who I used to be. But now, I see it for what it is. I see that I still have ways to go, despite how far I’ve come.

Okay so… this past week, Adrian has been texting me a lot less than he used to when we first started talking at the beginning. He replies to snaps about a half day later, literally usually a full twelve hours, and much less frequently too.

And old-me insecurities and thoughts started popping up in my head as a result: “whoa… he’s not texting as much as he did before. Maybe he’s freaking out about how quickly this all started and now he’s pulling back. And why is he taking forever to respond now? Is he really that busy or is it because we’re running out of things to talk about? What if he sees I’ve snapped him but he’s purposely not opening it for hours at a time so that he doesn’t have to reply? But back to the texting thing… I have no idea how his week is going, and before we kept up with one another in that way. What’s changed? Am I being too invasive? Am I being too forward? Should I pull back? Maybe I should pull back. But wait, I promised myself I wouldn’t play games this time around. I told myself that this felt different, that I could be myself without having to come off a certain way in order to make this work or to “get him”. Why do I feel different all of a sudden? How do I stop myself from feeling like this? Why am I feeling like this!?!?”

I can’t even begin to tell you how hard I’m cringing right now. But if I can’t be honest with myself about my insecurities here, where can I be, you know? I have to be honest with myself, always.

So, I talked about it with myself, I thought about it. And this is the conclusion I’ve arrived at in regards to that: this “sudden change” in our texting habits seemed like “inconsistency” to me. I kept thinking “well if it was so good in the start and now it’s already like this, what’s it going to be like 6 months from now!?”

But here’s the thing.

When people first start out in relationships, each party is doing their best to convey how much they are attracted to the other. Each person is being fueled by a lethal and heady cocktail of nearly-addictive neurochemicals that make us want to go above and beyond to secure what we define our “connection” is to this other person. But when the “honeymoon phase” ends? That’s when the consistency really begins. That’s when you start to settle into who you really are, aside from the crazy lustful neurochemicals that make you feel like you can scale a skyscraper.

I’m not saying that Adrian and I are suddenly leaving a “honeymoon phase” – hell, we haven’t even technically really entered it, seeing as we’ve only just begun seeing each other and we’re still in the midst of doing so. What I’m saying is that I became so attached to the habits we established starting out, that they actually became expectations without me even realizing. But when it comes down to it, those expectations are unrealistic because they’re based on those fleeting neurochemicals.

A relationship is like a house. It starts off as an idea – you end up in a time in your life where you feel like you can build something with someone that you seem to genuinely like, and/or are hella attracted to. So you go “hey, this piece of land right here? This looks like good land. It looks like a place where we can build something together. You wanna do this with me?” And they go, “hell yeah! Let’s do this.” (Usually… hopefully.)

So you start to build. But, what do you start with? Should you get right into building that house? Nah. You start with a foundation. You start laying in the groundwork. So in this phase, here is where you’re getting to know this person. Here is where you build the lasting aspect of the relationship, and to me, that’s the friendship.

Sometimes you get caught up in the house (non-metaphorically speaking, the romantic relationship) aspect of it all because you want it so badly. Or because it’s so exciting. Or maybe because that’s simply how it just, happened to start off – you started building the house first. Sometimes the foundation gets put on the backburner.

But inevitably, I think in all working relationships, you end up coming back to work on the foundation after all. Even after the house is built. No one wants a hollow house. A shaky house that can get blown apart once the winds of time and adversity begin to blow.

What I mean by this super flowery metaphorical analogy in regards to my own personal situation, is this: I think I started getting caught up in building the house when initially, I was totally okay with just focusing on the foundation. I started getting attached to the mechanics or expectations of what our romantic relationship entailed, and worse yet – I based it all on our electronic communications, which ultimately hold little to no meaning.

I can’t believe how attached to our phones we are in this day in age. We use it as a measuring device to denote how connected or close we are to the people in our lives – the quicker the reply, the closer you are, and the more effort you entail. But that’s. not. true.

And that’s what I need to remember. I gauge so much regarding the state of my relationships through my phone, when I really, really, really, really, really shouldn’t. I had no idea I had such an attachment to these things until I started reacting the way I did, first in that situation with Leila and again in my thoughts regarding Adrian.

You can’t hear someone’s voice through text no matter how much you fool yourself into believing you can. You can’t decide that someone cares less about you if they’re replying a lot later than they normally would, if you have no idea what they’re doing or what their lives entail in those exact moments where they’re not on their phone. You can’t assume that someone is purposely avoiding you or expending less energy to you if the way they do text you changes from time to time.

But you know what you can know for certain?

The way someone’s smile forms when they see you, in person. The way they look at you when they haven’t seen you for some time and you can genuinely feel the excitement radiating off of them as they approach you. How it feels to be in their arms, to have them kiss your forehead gently in the way that makes you feel exactly how they feel, in that moment.

And when those things aren’t there in person, that’s how you really know and then you can act or decide accordingly.

But no. My phone is not an effective device for measuring how deeply someone feels about me or how they feel towards me at all. And that, my friends, is my lesson of the week.

That and, “don’t assume, or you will make an “ass” out of “u” and “me.”

…legit.

I have ways to go. I didn’t even realize I still have insecurities that I still have to battle. Old ghosts that reappeared without me even realizing they could. But that’s okay. I’m not consumed by them. I just, see them for what they are now.

So tomorrow, I’m going to have fun. I’m going to be myself, and I’m going to tell Adrian how much I’ve missed him, no holds barred. I can’t control what happens outside of me, and that includes how he may or may not feel about me. But I damn well control how I choose to react to it all, and how I choose to internalize it. Or, not internalize it.

This was a good log! Very good. I’m happy.

Tomorrow’s going to be great, I can feel it. But for now, off to bed I go.

I’m so glad I’ve gotten back to my writing again. It feels good, like coming home.

I have big plans for all of this. I mentioned before, I’ve been thinking about all of these lessons I’ve accumulated throughout this past year and a half.

I think… I think I want to write a book.

I can see it in my head – it would be comprised of “lessons”, of the realizations I’ve gathered throughout the time I realized I wanted to do better for myself… from the moment I decided to love myself.

And I’m going to call it, “love, me.”

We’ll see. I don’t know when or how this idea came to me, only that it has, now in multiple ways and forms. And I can’t very well ignore the universe, now can I?

Until next time!!!

Love, love, love,

Stephanie.

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