It's Not You, It's Me: Why I'm metaphorically distancing and you should too.
Updated: May 20
This lockdown is actually proving to be fun for me:).
Yeah, I know it goes against how most people peg me: outgoing, talkative, a happy-go-partying, loafer :D.
But, for now, I'm really enjoying this low to no physical interaction with people, enjoying meals cooked by my husband and son and except for wanting to be at a mall and/or at the beach, I miss nothing!
Social Distancing is the GOAT😆.
Whatever interaction I do have is on chats and calls and that's the best way. Haha. All those memes about why call when you can text? They're written by my soul sibling😝.
Don't call for intervention just yet, I know the benefits of socialization, etc, and I'm not putting away my outdoor clothes to become a hermit. Not yet anyway:).
Maybe it's a result of my recent birthday, a year older and I'm a bit tired of you rub my back and I'll rub yours, reasons to be friendly with people. Either we're invested or we're not.
This time - out has driven us all to surviving financially, in doing and nurturing essentials in lifestyle and in relationships, and a whole lot of stock-taking has it not?
I should hope so!
I hope none of us come out the other side of history, without a new perspective or stuck in just the same old rut.
Sounds terribly sad if that's anyone's case.
The world as we know it has changed. Life always does, but this was drastic, unexpected and we were unprepared.
Some reacted with anxiety, some with panic, many are making tik tok videos, some still act like it's not affecting them and walk around without masks, and most everyone prayed.
I used this time to make posts about dressing up to stay in and to do some inward thinking. Some 2 am thoughts were not conducive to anyone and Shabin forbade that exercise and chose peaceful sleep instead.
The fresh mind version of productive soul searching bore some decent results:).
I like the person I've become. For most parts.
I'm not insecure, I'm less needy, I take offense lesser, I'm eating with intention and care, I'm reading a variety of topics, I'm happy, I'm staying busy, I read my Bible and Bible Plans with girlfriends and family... Basically, I'm being good.
My awareness and the urgency of my purpose to my family and community have just gotten sharper.
And that's why I don't have an interest in any doing for doing's sake kinda stuff.
It's Not You, it's Me.
What brought about some major thinking though was this: My sweet daughter turns 13 this month! Time is not fair to moms, is it? We're caught between wanting them to give us a break and wanting them to STOP growing up!
Anyway, her dad and I were just talking about the kids and their antics, and we got talking about how my son who's 16+ does a lot of chores around the house, and how lil Michelle was a suddenly a bit lazier on that front. She does stuff sure, just at a more reluctant pace than we'd have liked🤭. And Mark said something that struck a new chord inside me. He said, just because Dave hasn't been a typical, moody teen so far, doesn't mean that Michelle will/ should be like that too. And that makes total sense. She is such a bright spot in our lives. She brings a buzz to the home. She is a free spirit and she brings that to the table. We love her for it.
I'm definitely happy that they both have such unique personalities as well as the same sweet vein of common traits.
Michelle is our Adventure and Dave is our Calm. Both never miss an opportunity to roast us😂.
And we see these physical changes in her: the hemming and hawing and the changes in what she likes and leans towards now. What attracts her, what irritates.
So if the other side of that chirpy fellow is this new journey of creeping-in conflict between tween turning teenager, then we just gotta strap in and deal with it in support of her. It must be hard enough for her.
Of course, it's easier said than done. And it requires more resources of patience and discipline to not be dismissive, harsh nor pushovers. None of which are helpful in the long run.
Now I pray 2 prayers: A teenage Boy-mom prayer and a newly added, teenage girl-mom prayer.
And the struck chord was this: It's a new season for me too, in my added care towards my daughter.
It's a new thing to learn. The promise I made before friends and God to make sure she gets the best spiritual, physical and academic care extends to making sure she has good emotional care as well.
The teenager she'll soon become will then birth the woman she will be one day.
And this cusp is where I want to try and undo at least some of the stupid crap I have probably already passed on to my kids.
My irritations with certain people.
My insecurity with money.
My need for validation.
My certain lazy habits.
My impatience with my kids because I was "going through something".
I hope you're still following my zig-zag trail of thought?
OK, so then I realized, that all the above is mine to remedy. And I am changing what needs to. More faith, more accountability, and I'm not wimpy, but vulnerable prayers help!
Btw, with validation, I learned one thing: a culture of honor is worth investing your feelings into. I mentioned earlier: either you're invested or you're not. You're doing real-life with some.
You're just a scroll on everyone else's feed. Their 'validation' shouldn't matter.
Now if you've followed my blog, I've definitely written my share of venting about situations and certain timelines. And yes, there is a certain element of me being helpless in some of those.
Except for the effect people had on me.
It's Not You, It's Me.
Because some people will not change. And I can't let my kids see me react badly to it anymore.
Some mindsets will just get worse with age. I can't let it stop our journey as a mom and her teens navigating into their new unknowns, because someone else needs their black and white answers.
Some petty manipulations will still continue. I can't let them lose opportunities because someone's got it in for me.
Because I cannot anymore afford to waste my thoughts on things that are not mine to do anything about.
And if I continue to let some relationships or gestures be a part of my life in a way that brings out the toxic Prats in me, I Need To Stop.
I can remove myself from the path.
This does not mean being only nice to those who are nice back.
This is a lesson on setting boundaries. Other's and your own.
That is Biblical too if I may say so. Jesus walked away from the mob trying to kill him.
He instructed his disciples to walk away from places they weren't welcome at. Dust off your feet and walkaway was the firm missive in fact.
In a sense, protect others from you as well! When your reaction goes from patience to toxic, get out.
Maybe I don't believe in a certain brand of persons anymore. They may be heroes to someone's life, but if it only makes me react with disgust at what I feel is their hypocrisy, I'm the one being toxic. And my teenagers are watching.
If I dislike someone's attention-seeking plays and the cooing they expect just isn't me anymore. While they may be cute to some others, I'm being toxic with my eye-rolling and muttering. And my teenagers are watching.
Someone probably got 255 likes on their profile pic, and we find each other equally plastic but I put on a show of praising them and then smirk when I'm alone, I'm being toxic. And my teenagers are watching.
And I'm not ok with doing that anymore.
I'm finding that being at peace with my mirror image is becoming more important to me than jumping unnecessary hoops.
We can't win spiritual battles while navigating through someone else's moods, emotions, baggage.
It's Not You, It's Me.
I want to harbor a new teen trying to find herself, and I'm looking out for the boy being shaped into a man. I need to be in a good place myself. It's where my strength to complete my calling will come from.
It's where my kids will see me nurturing the people in my purpose.
Where they will see me stepping beyond my comfort zone into someone else's need.
A better outcome than the forced toxic one isn't it?
Everyone doesn't have to like everyone.
And we make new connections as we go along. Life teaches us that.
This is ok.
Not all co- journeys have to last a lifetime. We all play some part in someone's else story, but we should learn the exit cue in some and the entry cue in others.
Don't miss your opportunities to do either.
There are non-negotiable relationships, work on those. Call on all your powers of love, peace, patience, forgiveness, humility, and apply them there.
There are new seasons and a new purpose every now and then.
This is also ok.
There's a new normal coming.
I need my life to be focused.
It's Not You, It's Me.
P.S: What do you think? I'd love to hear you in the comments or DMs:).