I choose me …

I can confidently say that everything I have done in my nearly 30 years on this planet has been expected of me. I was expected to go to school and become something – someone in which my parents could be proud. I chose my major and immediately started meeting expectations set forth by my professors and mentors. Upon graduation, I took a job and immediately started working on those expectations set by my employers.

In my personal life, it’s been the same thing. I’ve been so rigid about conducting myself in a way that would not shame my family or myself that I have been unable to embrace things like spontaneity and unstructured fun. Amongst my groups of friends, I have always been the one perceived as having the level head. I always made sure everyone got home safely after a night of drinking and partying. I was always the one trying to get people to think ahead about the consequences of their respective actions.

In all this time and the roles I’ve played as a daughter, a sister, a student and a friend, I don’t recall making any decision where I completely thought of myself first. Is this what I want? What I need? How will this help me? At this time in my life while I am re-assessing my career choice and my motivation another area in my life that needs attention has reared its head and in that situation, I chose me.

For years I’ve been holding myself hostage in a relationship or the idea of a relationship out of expectation – from myself, from him, my parents, people who know us. Recent events have made me realize that I was holding on to him and this idea of us in expectation of this fairytale ending. I never stopped to ask myself if this is healthy. If this is what I need. Not even how this will enhance my life. I did this weekend and I couldn’t give myself a straight answer. The fact that I couldn’t explain myself to me was all the reason I needed to choose me.

It’s taken a while, some soul-searching and separate conversations with most of my girls and we all agree that I have to do what’s best for me. From this point on, that is exactly what I’m doing. I have no plans to cut anyone out of my life but there will be restrictions on the access certain people are allowed to have to me. As I Tweeted early Sunday morning, “some people don’t deserve to have a reserved spot in my heart or head.” For the sake of my sanity and my feelings, some folks reservations have been cancelled.

“I’m leaving don’t try and stop me,
I’m late and she is waiting.
My love for me is too much
And I can’t stay …”

———

So tell me, when did you start choosing you? Have you started? What’s the hold up?
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6 responses to “I choose me …

  1. Great post! I talk about this all the time because for some reason, we women believe that it’s our duty to put everyone else before us and that only gets worse as you get older and more people come crashing into your life. (yes, I said CRASHING). We have to understand that only by caring for ourselves, mentally, physically and emotionally can we properly care for others. Good Job!

  2. Good Job Smarty. I didn’t see your tweet but we’ve had several conversations and I know all of this took time to get to this place of ME first.

  3. Love this post! Every so often I reflect on relationships and decisions. It’s so healthy….

  4. Unfortunately, I always thought it will be that “moment of exhale” but it wasn’t. It was things starting to pile like a molehill and eventually I decided something had to give. It had to start within me because I was the one allowing this to build up and keeping people around. When you put yourself first, things fall into place including yourself.

  5. I think a lot of people are faced with this kind of thing in certain situations or maybe even in all aspects of their lives. But it comes down to taking care of yourself first; it’s not healthy otherwise.

  6. Nice post. I can identify with this post on a career level. I got the degree, got the job, got the applause, but then lacked fulfillment. Something wasn’t right, I realised. So how, after all these years, do you know what it is that you really want? The hard part for me, is listening to myself. How do you know?

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