I am slowly learning that the only person I can truly rely on is the person I see in the mirror — and maybe that is okay. Maybe that isn’t as scary as it sounds.
I am slowly learning that it is not selfish to choose myself. To say goodbye to the people who make me feel worthless. To walk away from toxic relationships without being haunted by regret or a guilty conscience. To remove the sources of negativity from my life because I deserve more than their pessimism. I am slowly learning it is healthy to care about myself first.
I am slowly learning that my future (and my present) is completely within my control. I cannot rely on someone else to bring me happiness. I cannot rely on someone else to pay the rent. I cannot rely on someone else to love me enough to fool myself into feeling confident. I must make my own happiness. I must make my own money. I must discover self-love on my own, without the help of an outside force.
I am slowly learning that it is okay to distribute my love with caution. That trust is something that can take weeks, months, or even years to fully earn. It cannot be given freely to anyone who desires it. It cannot be given out without reason. Trust can be yanked away in the blink of an eye but it takes time to build. It takes time to evaluate whether someone is authentic or counterfeit. It takes time to decide whether or not they belong in my universe.
I am slowly learning that most people I come across will choose the easy path over the genuine path. They will choose little white lies over admitting they messed up and apologizing for the mistake. They will choose to run away from their emotions instead of dealing with them head-on. They will choose to do what makes the most sense for them without taking anyone else’s feelings into consideration first. They will choose themselves. They will protect themselves.
I am slowly learning that I cannot blame other people for caring about themselves above all else. I cannot blame them for assuming the worst from others. I cannot blame them for growing into skeptics in the dark world we live in.
I am slowly learning that my trust issues aren’t unwarranted — but I cannot let them stop me from forming genuine connections with others. I cannot let them stop me from opening my heart up to other people, from seeing the best in them, from allowing them into my life for an unlimited amount of time.
I am slowly learning that there are exceptions to every rule. That there are people in this world who will tell me the truth instead of what I’m looking to hear. People who I don’t have to shut out, who I don’t have to keep my guard up around. People who I can trust completely, without fear of repercussion, without fear of being torn apart again.