Protecting Our Friendships

Protecting Our Friendships

More specifically, protecting the interests of the individuals that we’re bridged to. Today, I sent a short email to Spongey. Note that when I say “short”, it’s Leemanism short. ^_^ So I sent an email to her with as straight forward of a thought process as I could make it given the circumstance. Basically, removing all of the silly willowy stuff I often put in my emails, it came down to one thing: protection.

I looked back at my entire life transitioning into my more adult lifestyles and noticed one common theme: selfish regard. While I was certainly to some degree, caring and considerate towards my friends, I was also somewhat full of myself even if it leaned more subtly. Perhaps, people are more careful of what they say to me as we all become older, due to my track record of subtle narcissism. Of course, I am taking all of the blame. I am not going to look back at every detail and nitpick at every wrong doing my friends have directly and indirectly accused me of.

I grew up standing up for myself. Even though the people who have bridged themselves to me are good people, ultimately, I am still the one who walk this road alone with the occasional person to walk alongside with, with some people more than others. Basically, what I am trying to say here is that standing up for myself has evolved to protecting the interests of the individuals involved in my sphere of relationships.

In the recent years, through social media, I have had the unfortunate shallow mentality of mostly speaking my mind without regard of the reputation of my friends. I strongly held the belief that my friends were a reflection of my self-assured bluntness, honesty and sincerity without the drama. What I could not accept at the time, was why they could be whatever they want in the privacy of our good friendships, but not have that same thing publicly acknowledged. I understood professionally and through the eyes of their family members, they wanted to keep their more personal aspects ‘secret’, but I was having a difficult time accepting that.

So every time a friend asked to remove a certain photo of them, yell at me for saying something inappropriate or do something that they disapprove, I felt like a small fragment of me turned to dust, then blew away. By the time my illnesses set in, spent a lot of time doing medical check ups and reflecting, I realized that I am not the same person as I was merely five to ten years ago. At my core, I am still the same, but so many facets of my character has changed. As I mentioned elsewhere, I truly feel like I am a husk of what I used to be, but not so empty that I am numb like I used to feel.

I haven’t taken credit for the past actions of protecting my friends and in lieu of those things, I have been indirectly accused of many things. I admit it hurts, but mostly, I hate how I twisted myself to be a flip flopping version of what I should have been, versus what I was deemed to be. It’s no wonder why I don’t have the same respect from people that I used to.

On one hand, I wanted to be me. Then on the other hand, I wanted to protect them. It was like Doctor Jekyll and Mister Hyde. One was trying to do the right thing and the other was trying to be the right thing. In the end, I was a flake amounting to a sea of cornflakes. All of them broken fragments of my personal ethics and moral gradients.

However, I have come to a realization, after thinking about it for quite a long time, after many sleepless nights, frustrating moments nearing despair tormenting me from the moment I cast myself out or was rejected by half ideas, that it comes down to whether I honour those friendships fully or not. I know I said gradients, as gradients make up the entire life range of a person, even if they themselves reject them, then think in black and white terms. Like I am trying to do right now. {wink} Here’s the thing though: sometimes, I cannot allow myself to be so complicated. Sometimes, I need to simplify certain things, even if it branches off into further despair. The reason is that there are other things that require my time and energy. I will allow some despair, but I would not allow despair to take a hold of my life and cast me down into the depths of my self-pity or rather, this misery.

In case anyone is mistaking what I am saying here, it has nothing to do with my wife. It’s solely a personal thing. ^_^

I want to champion my own thought process here. I want to engage this train of thought with sincerity. That means I want to stand up taller than what I was and remind myself that it’s important that to protect the interest of those in my sphere of friendships. I will continue to take the brunt of my misgivings, as I have always. Hey, I was the one who told my baby brother that we’ll ride out of there (the babysitter) on our tricycles, to where mom and dad was. We were about six and three years old. I was that confident and I knew what needed to be done. I wish I am still that Leeman. The brave, courageous, straightforward kid who did what he thought he wanted and needed to do. That is, until the babysitter yelled over to us, “Hey! Where are you two going?! Come back here! It’s dinner time!.”

No need to tell me the six year old me was naive or that I am naive right now. I’m merely pointing out the lone star leadership aspect of what I should have been.

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