Fitting in verses belonging

Fitting in verses belonging

“It’s during the toughest times in your life that you’ll get to see the true colors of the people who say they care about you. Notice who sticks around and who doesn’t, and be grateful for those who leave you, for they have given you the room to grow in the space abandoned, and the awareness to appreciate the people who loved you when you didn’t feel lovable.  Bottom line: Be ok with giving the gift of your absence to those who do not appreciate and respect your presence.” Unknown

This quote is actually quite beautiful and everyone will have their own way of interpreting it. 

Here are my thoughts:

This quote is interesting and it gave me pause…for all the times I have left or been left.  Honestly, we can’t see people's true colors because we aren’t looking through their lens…perception is everything.  We can’t know another person’s reality unless we have heard it from their own mouth and even then, it can be skewed by their perception, history, and pain. 

When we are given the gift of space and self-discovery, we have an opportunity to grow and become more of who we are meant to be.  Hopefully with empathy for ourselves and others without harsh judgement for either. Remember judgement requires punishment and shame.  We need to realize people can leave our lives for many reasons that have nothing to with us or everything to do with us.

I will be really honest here; I left a relationship and it cost a lot.  I felt like I lost everything and to some degree I did. But I felt I had no other recourse.  I could not effect change and I felt I was drowning. I honestly thought I was being real, honest and full of love in this relationship. Only to realize, now, that although this relationship had love, it was also full of my inability to be myself, love myself and therefore it could never last. The relationship was built on the lies I believed about myself (I didn’t know were lies) 

“If you trade your authenticity for safety, you many experience the following: Anxiety, depression, eating disorders, addiction, rage, blame, resentment, and inexplicable grief” Brene Brown.

I was all of the above at one point or another. 

I morphed into what I thought the relationship needed.  Did I hurt people who I love? Yes! Do I regret that? Yes.  Do I regret leaving? No. Because I needed to break free, to breakdown, to breakthrough.  It took almost 2 years for me to come face to face with my reality. 

It was never about the people I left, it was about me, my own insecurities and my past. My coping skills.  I became the person who did what I thought they needed or wanted.  I never listened to my gut, I never said what I thought deep down and I lived in fear.  Fear of not being strong, not being good enough, not being valuable and not being worthy of love or respect.  I am a people pleaser. 

They didn’t cause this…this coping mechanism was developed early on in life.  These people just were part of the wake of my running away to try save them from me and me from them.   There was a lot of disfunction in this relationship and there is more to the story, but its not mine to tell because I can’t see through their lens. 

The last line of this quote I don’t 100% agree with in my regard, my reality

“Be ok with giving the gift of your absence to those who do not appreciate and respect your presence” It’s the “to those who do not appreciate and respect your presence”. For me it was more like “to those who do not appreciate and respect their own presence” I had lost the ability to have an opinion and a voice.  My insecurity took over and I instead of belonging made myself FIT. 

“True belonging is the spiritual practice of believing in and belonging to yourself so deeply that you can share your most authentic self with the world and find sacredness in both being apart of something and standing alone in the wilderness.  True belonging doesn’t require you change who you are; it requires you to be who you are.”

In this relationship I felt very alone.  I honestly felt like I was always on the outside looking in.  I know now that wasn’t healthy, honest or life giving for anyone. 

I am learning to accept that who I am is okay. That some people will value me for me and others won’t.  I am on the road to self-acceptance, love and in turn being able to authentically love others more with no agenda for reciprocation. I am free.

Romans 12:6-8 MSG

“If you preach, just preach God’s Message, nothing else; if you help, just help, don’t take over; if you teach, stick to your teaching; if you give encouraging guidance, be careful that you don’t get bossy; if you’re put in charge, don’t manipulate; if you’re called to give aid to people in distress, keep your eyes open and be quick to respond; if you work with the disadvantaged, don’t let yourself get irritated with them or depressed by them. Keep a smile on your face”.

After 59 years on this earth I am finally learning to hear the voice of God over the voice of man.  I am here to honour His call on my life.  In pleasing Him I in turn will be serving my fellow man but not empowering them to run my life.  I don’t have to FIT IN.

“Fitting in” – is becoming who you think they need in order to be accepted.  “Belonging” is being your authentic self and knowing that no matter what happens, you belong to you”. Brene Brown

To those who left me and I left them; I am grateful for your presence in my life, lessons you taught me and even the pain of loss. I needed to learn to stand on my own and be me.  I pray God’s love all around you and may you shine His love to others as you walk this journey out.  I pray we can see something good in our time together and forgive our humanness and flaws and truly believe we are His masterpiece.

Dear God,

Thank you from the bottom of my heart for loving me, forgiving me, hearing me, healing me and never leaving me even when I ran from you.  Thank you for the lessons in this life I have had the courage to learn.  Thank you for the people who I have loved and who have loved me through the many seasons of this life. Thank you for being my strength when I am weak, courage when I am afraid, wisdom when I feel foolish and comfort when I feel alone and rejected.  Thank you for being steadfast in your love for me. For always protecting me. Thank you that in my brokenness you have called me to be more than what I see, to be what you see. 

Love,

 Kath

 


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