Category Archives: Maybe It’s Just Me:

Maybe It’s Just Me: Love

I’ve tried a few times over the past few days to write this post but when it comes to the topic of love, I find it hard to write about so here are some of my thoughts I have about the word.

1. It’s Conditional. 
Everyone dreams of a love that is unconditional, but I don’t believe a love such as this exists within the reach of human beings. I’m not getting spiritual or religious here but I cannot believe that an unconditional love between two people can truly exist. People fall in and out of love on a daily basis, friends become enemies or distant from a fight or other circumstances, families can fall apart in a matter of months from quarreling.

I know I’m only 24 but I’ve both experienced and observed so many instances where these things occur that it makes me doubt the idea of unconditional love between two people. Things occur that are difficult to forgive, let alone forget and this causes a gap in the relationship where the same level of love is no longer there.

2. It Comes & Goes

A lot of what I’m saying may come across as depressing, but I’m just expressing what I see as truth in my world. They say that nothing lasts forever and I believe the same thing can be said about love. Now I’m not just talking about romantic love for this post. A love between friends who grew close over the years and then one day look around and realize they went from close to acquaintance happens a lot in my own opinion. I believe it’s just a part of the human experience.

I have however on a more positive note come to realize that just because that love in a friendship has come and gone, does not mean it’s the end of the world. You know the old saying that when God closes a door it’s so He can open another one? Well that’s exactly what I believe happens in situations like this. One person plays a role in your life for a season and when that season comes to an end, another person or people can enter into your life whereas before they might not have gotten a chance to do so.

3. It Requires Trust.

I’ll be blunt here. I have trust issues all over the place, especially in regards to allowing people in. Something in me is telling me to trust no one, but what type of life would that be if I listened? I’d be a crazy, friendless and lonely cat lady by the time I hit 25. Trust is one of the most difficult things we as humans have to learn to do. From past mistakes we tend to not want to trust anyone from there on out; yet when you think about that, isn’t it completely unfair to place the blame on someone who was not even part of the reason your walls were built?

Here’s what I’ve learned about trust (a point inside a point?! You betcha!)
a) it takes time. It’s dangerous to be an open book all at once; normal people aren’t going to stick around for long if your way of trust is to throw your whole life at them in one conversation (unless it’s someone you’re paying.. but even then..)
b) it’s scary. There’s always that risk where the person you believe you can trust will turn out to use your words against you, spread rumors about you and so on.
c) It makes relationships more fulfilling. Being able to trust someone is key to a relationship (once again in my opinion). Trusting someone enough to discuss whatever is a way of giving them a piece of your heart even without saying those exact words.

I genuinely believe we’re all capable of love; however it may not and probably won’t be a Romeo & Juliet love or Tony & Maria type of love (because we all know how those 2 stories end… dun dun!). So to end this, I’ll leave you with one last point:

4) To love is to be alive

 

“Being deeply loved by someone gives you strength, while loving someone deeply gives you courage.”
Lau Tzu

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Maybe It’s Just Me: Being Lonely & Feeling Alone

We all go through times where we feel alone. There’s a lyric from a Jack’s Mannequin song I love called Dark Blue. The lyric says: 

Dark blue, dark blue

Have you ever been alone in a crowded room? 

 

I don’t know why I’ve always loved that lyric, but up to this day it remains a favorite of mine. Some may beg to differ on this, but I find those lyrics to be the epitome of what feeling alone is like. Now excuse me as I begin to resemble an old woman here, but over the years I’ve come to realize that feeling lonely is more subjective than objective; what I mean is that feeling alone is sometimes nothing more than that, a feeling. 

So many days I’ve spent muttering the words (to other people mind you) “I feel all alone”. Statements like this tend to arise out of an emotional state. We’re going through a difficult time and it feels like there’s no one we can talk to that will truly understand, which can leave us feeling alone when quite the opposite is true. 

I don’t believe we’re ever alone. I believe that our mindset plays a huge role in how we perceive friends and family around us. We make ourselves feel alone out of isolation and shutting down emotionally to others which unfortunately can result in those we love to slowly move backwards. 

All of the above is what I would consider being lonely. 

We all need other people, and sometimes they can’t give us what we need or want from them. I believe it’s a human nature to need love and company of others. Sometimes it’s so easy to change in between feeling alone and being lonely. 

Being lonely is: 

Wanting a friend, family member, significant other, etc. to be with you
Not having someone to talk to at 3am when you’re crying because everyone else is sleeping

Feeling alone is:

Your mind convincing you that no one will be there when you need them
Barricading yourself off from others and not letting them in.
Catastrophizing 

Maybe It’s Just Me: Growing Up

Ok I’ll admit, this whole thought process came to me when I was rocking out to Avril Lavigne’s Here’s to Never Growing Up (because we all know deep thoughts during an upbeat song is so punk rock).

Growing up, we all do it whether we like to admit it or not. Sure there’s a certain age where once we hit it, we magically get to just keep celebrating the anniversary of that day (so when you’re 35 you’re really celebrating 30 and 5 anniversaries, ya feel me?). I get how growing up is challenging though.

Once we reach 18 we’re all legally considered an adult which means those shenanigans we got into with our friends could actually run the risk of being an activity in which some quality time with a large man named Bubba behind beautifully dull steel bars and the gorgeous wardrobe of slippers and an orange jumpsuit, could be the end result.

Growing up is more than your age though, and it could be daunting. Sure there’s norms society expects of us as we age, for example it’s a norm that by the time you’re in your late 20’s you more than likely should be living on your own and not in your parents’ house; but I think emotional growing up is something not a lot of people recognize or at least pay attention to.

Some people never grow up fully and act their age. Personalities are all individualized and with that is the rate at which we all navigate through our stages of development (I know, more psychology talk. That’s what you get for reading a psych majors blog though hehe). Sometimes our emotional growing up can be stunted or even stopped by traumatic events or mental disorders/ addictions. I think the emotional aspect of growing up is hard to recognize in ourselves, although it is possible. Addicts often say that they still feel that they’re the age they were when the addiction first began (thus supporting the theories of development in addiction).

Some people simply don’t mature emotionally because they’re trying to hold onto the fun in their lives. You see it a lot at the clubs and bars. There’s always that one guy who is obviously older than the young woman he is flirting with and buying drinks for. I understand wanting to have fun, but as we grow up (both in regards to age and emotional maturity) things we once found fun can lose that spark and we find other activities or interests to be just as or even more enjoyable.

Once we reach adulthood we’re expected to begin living the life of an average American adult. In order to even survive in society we all are expected/ needed to get a job that will sustain our bank account. I think emotional maturity is shown greatly here. If you’re constantly bouncing around from job to job and not sticking it out, I’d say there’s some work to be done there. If you’re consistently blowing your paycheck on things like clothes, shoes or things you simply can do without instead of socking that cash away in the bank so you can afford more than just the bare minimum in groceries or gas, I’d also say you’d probably benefit from working on that.

The fun of our youth can’t last forever. Being an irresponsible young adult, not caring about the serious things and only focusing on the next party isn’t going to get you anywhere in life.

Sure never growing up SOUNDS fun and adventurous, but in reality unless we grow up I’m not sure we can truly get where we want to in life.

Maybe It’s Just Me: Sticks & Stones

If you haven’t been 100% isolated from the world (no offense Mr. JD Salinger) from birth you’ve heard the ever so famous children’s rhyme: Sticks and stones may break my bones but words will never hurt me. It was our parents way of ingraining into our not yet fully developed mind that we shouldn’t allow the words of others to hurt us, but to the kids who spent/spend countless days, months or years being torn down and bullied by their peers this little rhyme loses meaning and loses it fast. 

I have a heart for those who are bullied or have ever been bullied, and I’ve noticed over the years as technology has seemingly taken over every area of our life (I know I sound like an elderly woman in her late 80’s), the ways in which bullies have access to our lives has expanded greatly. I’ve seen hurtful comments on almost every social media site out there; from Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Tumblr and so on. It seems as if there’s even more avenues for bullying. 

It saddens me to see these things appear on my news feed because unlike those of us who grew up being bullied before even the days of MySpace (i know, i know crazy right?) or social media in general, the kids these days who get torn down have an easy way of reliving that pain and those words over and over again. With a simple click or so they can go back to the hurtful words someone sent them and stare at it for hours as it lights up their screen. 

People my age have vivid memories they can keep going back to. Our heads are dangerous territory, especially those who have gone through so much scrutiny for simply being who they are. Even to this very day if the person is in their mid 20’s they can recall every single word so and so said to them. 

No matter the avenue, words do in fact hurt. They can hurt so bad that one could resort in developing a serious mental illness or disorder, turn to self-destructive behaviors or even worse: suicide. 

Sticks and stones do hurt (i mean, duh) but words have a tendency to stick in peoples minds for so much longer than any bruise or cut may last. Physical wounds heal, but emotional wounds can take years or even decades to heal. 

Be careful what you say to those around you. Words impact people whether positive or negative. Use words to encourage, not demoralize. Love others. Treat others fairly. If we’re going to be speaking cliche lingo here, love others like you’d want them to love you. 

People don’t realize how badly verbal harassment and cyber bullying affects you, what they said to me sticks to me to this day.

– Demi Lovato 

 

Maybe It’s Just Me: Regrets

Psychologist Erik Erikson is famous for his model of stages of psycho-social development; he believed that everyone goes through 8 stages of development: Trust v. Mistrust, Autonomy v Shame & Doubt, Initiative v Guilt, Industry v Inferiority, Identity v Role Confusion, Intimacy v Isolation, Generativity v Stagnation and finally Integrity v Despair.

I fear getting to the 8th stage at the end of my life and realizing I have more regrets (despair) than I do feelings of accomplishment (integrity).

We all have regrets in life. Maybe we regret not applying to that college, letting someone we love get away, not listening to our heart enough, not spending enough time with our family while we still have the chance to. Whatever it is we regret, we somehow find ourselves so inside our own heads reliving the moment(s) we wish we could take back or do differently.

I’ve spent a lot of time wondering how my life would be different if I only did X over or differently. It’s hard to accept sometimes that our past is set in stone, that there’s no taking it back. These are the things I fear I will look back on at the end of my life and have those moments overpower all the positive things I’ve done with my life. It seems as if focusing on the past failures and mistakes gives us more of an identity and defines our self-worth than all the accomplishments and success we have over the course of time.

Currently, I’m learning to embrace the small things and that everything happens for a reason. Sure, we’ll have regrets throughout life, but what I’m trying to say is that they shouldn’t define the over all quality of our life. Easier said than done right?

Do what you want to do, do what makes you happy, cherish the people in your life, don’t shy away from chasing a dream, care less about making mistakes and live your life to the fullest potential.