The past year has been hard on me. And hard on my relationships. But what I’ve been reminded is that the best relationships are a give and take, not just a give…or perhaps rather, not just a take…and take…and take. Friendships, by their very nature, are meant to be a two-way street – and isn’t that how we balance one another? A friendship, to me, means being there for one another during the ups and downs, through the crazy rotten times and the celebrations…not simply when it is convenient or easy or fun. Relationships are messy. And sometimes difficult. They take time; they take effort. But doesn’t everything that’s truly worth it in life? And I guess that’s what’s up to each of one of us to decide: who and what is truly worth it.
I am the queen of justification.
You want an excuse not to workout? I’m your girl. I can even convince you to go get ice cream with me instead.
You want to buy that top but it’s not really in the budget? I’ll tell you the 87 places you can wear it (especially to work because who DOESN’T need new clothes for work?!?)
You want to go to Five Guys when you specifically have told me 65 times in the past week that you are on a strict diet? Of course we should have Five Guys. If we don’t, your body will think you’ve lost your head and all this hard work will go down the drain. It’s good to treat yourself now and again.
You don’t want to meet up with a friend who is bugging you? I can tell you the nicest way to skirt the truth and bail.
I am a master at my craft.
But my art of justifying things for others (and often myself), also swings in a different direction: I can make excuses for people and their bad behavior, thoughtlessness, and even idiocy until the cows come home. (How is that a thing, by the way? Where are these cows? What are they doing? The only cows I ever see are hanging out, eating grass and exerting very little energy otherwise. But I digress.) It’s true that I’m a people pleaser through and through and that’s something I’ve been working on. Part of my personality, or so says Myers-Briggs, is to desire harmony in all situations. So even when my feelings are hurt, I will excuse away:
“I know she is struggling right now, so it’s ok that she didn’t respond.”
“He’s really busy with work and the kids and stuff, so it’s ok that I didn’t hear from him during the holidays.”
“He’s a terrible planner; even though it’s the last minute, I’ll just rearrange things so I can make it.”
“She’s being really snippy; I must have done something. How can I fix this?”
“I’m a planner so it’s just natural that I organize things all the time.”
I excuse, I forgive, I rearrange, I arrange, I bend.
But you know what? I’m tired.