The last few years I have been writing and ruminating on editing my life, clearing off my proverbial plate. Narrowing down to only what is needed. Keeping only what is authentic and true. And through that process, I have let go of a lot of friendships/relationships/“situation-ships” in my life. I have learned boundaries and how to navigate a lot of situations and areas of my life that I would have otherwise tolerated. Some of these relationships lost have been so major and painful, they have required a mourning period, & some… well, just a giant relief.
One thing I did not anticipate, was something I realized in the last few months. I sometimes pre-maturely end some things that I probably shouldn’t have.
I mean, I do know that I tend to – (ha – ok, i DO) build walls that are high.
And that is indeed very intentional. Walls protect.
But walls also keep out fulfillment, promises, laughter & joy.
Letting someone behind those walls, or briefly letting them down?
Ooof… that takes mad trust, doesn’t it?
Trust is the most mysterious, painfully difficult, out-of-reach thing that I have yet to actually grasp… It’s like wanting something so badly, yet refusing to ever actually pick it up.
Which finally brings me to my point. You know the old adage, “Don’t throw the baby out with the bath water?” This fall I looked back on my year and realized how many times I had accidentally done just that.
Maybe it was in an effort to protect myself.
Or my peace.
I am quick to throw up shields, walls, and even sometimes draw my sword in a situation that it is uncalled for. I have become very, very good at quickly sweeping someone or something off of my proverbial life plate.
Deeming them or it unworthy.
It can be a glimmer of something that scares me. A tone of voice that leans towards anger.
Who knows what ~ we all have to learn our own triggers.
Especially if you come with a past riddled and bent from traumas, deep experiences, difficult childhoods, sickness, loss.
ALL those things you’d rather save in the deep corners of your heart.
The corner that you expose only to the precious few you have come to truly trust.
But what is the problem with quick draw of the sword and shield?
I was missing out.
We are missing out.
You may be missing out.
In our quickness to dismiss.
Or get rid of someone new – or even someone old…
We are perhaps missing out on what could grow into an invaluable relationship for that season, or perhaps even a lifetime.
I looked back this year and realized – stress can be the biggest trigger – sometimes in the middle of the stress – you can throw a red flag on something benign – just because you are overwhelmed with life, (or maybe even just tired or hangry, ha! *raises hand high!*)
So many life circumstances can trigger our fight or FLIGHT and we flee from something that maybe could have helped that problem and made it better…. you name it … ( losing a loved one, the dog died, kids moving to college, cancer, money issues, exes, jobs.) Like I said, you name it!!
Sometimes lack of communication or a misread of someone can make you choose a hard pass from what could have become one of your best friends…
You. just. never. know.
I talked to a lifetime friend about this last week. As I spoke my heart and concerns, he stopped me and reminded me of some huge things I had gone through in life.
He voiced where my fears were valid.
Then he said something life changing…
“Jules, We have to live in the tension.”
We spoke further on this… “Living in the tension is living in the integrity of the truth. Just because A is true, doesn’t mean B isn’t true also. You can’t live in one and pretend the other is not true also.”
So… I said, “My fear of something, does not have to cancel it out.”
(***The catch 22 in all of this is… discernment and prayer.
Because there are absolutely times that those things you should blow off, SHOULD be blown off. Red flags shining so bright? Walk away. See alll other writings on this & domestic abuse***)
Discernment, communication, knowledge, stillness and prayer.
The cornerstone of our decision making.
But, do NOT hold onto grudges, hate, fears, or mourn a life of what you think you deserved for so long that you miss out on the life you have.
Do not keep walls so high that you one day turn around and realize, you missed out on your whole life.
Give people a chance to surprise you with their love, goodness & laughter.
Surprise them back.
This is the year to not waste another minute
& to “live in the tension.”
♡ ~ jul