It took me a long time to realise that not all people in life are permanently there beside you; sometimes we grow apart, sometimes we become toxic to one another and sometimes people just decide that they do not want us within their lives anymore. For me this was a hard realisation, as once I connect with someone I have a hard time letting them go especially if I have shared moments with them in which I have been truly myself. It took me a long time to come to terms with the fact that I no longer fit into the picture of other people’s lives; at times compromising my own sense of pride in an attempt to re-instigate relationships that were already dead or soured beyond repair.
For me it comes from a place in which I believe we are all connected on a level that does not take into consideration physical distance. Therefore, bonding with someone through mutual understanding forges a feeling of appreciation and platonic love inside of me that will not be extinguished. Now, however, I have come to the understanding that although a person does not reciprocate my love or appreciation, I can always treasure what once was beautiful between us. In a way there is something more selfless about caring and thinking of someone without the expectation that they must do so back.
It took a long time to feel like it was okay to think of someone and not have to act on those thoughts; an impulse control which showed respect for a person’s decision not to be part of my life. It also took a long time for me to realise that we should never have to beg someone to be part of our lives; that if they do not freely value you then chasing them does nothing but diminish our own integrities and create resentment from the people we are so desperate to connect with. I guess really you cannot expect that just because you care for someone this has to be reciprocated.
This seems to lead to the understanding that: feelings are not optional, it is not as if you can ask someone to feel a certain way about you and then treat you as you wish them to; that is just a form of control. We do not all get everything that we wish for in life. If we did we would not have the chance to grow as people and develop skills to cope with situations with aren’t what we wanted or expected. We also do not get to chose who we connect with and what that connection means to the other person; in a way it is almost as if in a friendship we expect the other person to care for us in the same way we care for them. However much we may try we never truly experience life in the same way another person does; we do not feel in the same sense, we do not think with the same minds, we do not love with the same hearts. This does not mean that people care, think or love any less. It simply means that the way one person may experience and exhibit connections and relationships differ from our own; so we cannot expect someone to treat us exactly how we treat them as they are individual in their experience of this life.
People also are not always what we convince ourselves they are; we can spend hours reminiscing on the past until our image of a person is hued with the coloured lens which we crave. Of course our memory tricks us, but in a way we also trick our memories; attaching emotions and feelings to them which were not there when the events actually took place. It as if we almost trick ourselves into believing that events were more significant than they were or that we even had a better relationship with these people than we actually did.
For me letting someone go does not me erasing them for our thoughts and memories; for me it simply means no longer yearning to rekindle what once was between us. For me I believe I will always love and appreciate the people who once were in my life, but I understand now that they were not permanent (no matter how much I wanted them to be). In a sense, by trying to push and pull people back into our lives we only sour the natural progression which relationships follow. Truly, in my own life, I am grateful for the people who have stayed so close throughout everything. However, I also appreciate those who have not, as these relationships have taught me how to care and love others from afar; and most of all how to stop trying to control every aspect of my life so intensely with the expectation that things will always turn out the way I want them to.