I don’t pay attention to what I say before I say it. It comes out without a thought, almost like that scene in Mean Girls where they call it “word vomit.” It happens more than I’m comfortable admitting. I know that I don’t choose the correct words and I don’t always know the right thing to say. In fact, I rarely know the right thing to say. I say things or do things without thinking about them. I don’t think about how they’re impacting everyone around me.
I’ll ask for favors and I don’t reciprocate them very well. I’m a forgetful person sometimes. It’s not an excuse, but it’s true. I don’t recognize when I’m doing it, but I do. Then when I finally do think, it’s overkill. It doesn’t stop and I’ll think about something for hours on end—I’ll get deep in my head and it spirals out of control.
My anxiety gets the best of me most of the time. I know I’m capable of doing great things. I don’t doubt my intelligence; I don’t doubt that I’m good at some things. I think too much or I think too little. I wish there was an in-between with me, but there rarely is.
Maybe sometimes I am the bad guy, though. I don’t think about what I’m doing, I don’t think about how other people feel, I don’t recognize when I’m being difficult until it’s too late. By then I realize that I’ve taken advantage of people.
It might not have been intentional—I never went into something decidedly taking advantage of kindness. I expect things to work out, even though I don’t put in the right kind of effort for them to work out. I get emotional before I get rational. I can claim I’m a rational thinker, but I’m not. Everything about me screams emotional. Even my mind screams at me that I’m too emotional.
If I’m not being too emotional, I’m being nothing. I’m not thinking clearly, I fall asleep at the wrong times, I don’t do the right things, I’m rarely physically there for people even if I know their language of affection is physical. I don’t know what to say or when to say it. I run away when I feel scared.
I hold people away from me because if they’re far enough away, they can’t hurt me. I’ve been accused of keeping the people I love at an arm’s length and I’ll always deny it. I don’t know when I’m doing it, but when I look back, I see it. It’s selfish of me, but my subconscious is set to protect myself.
When people leave, or when they’re close to, I’ll make every effort possible to make sure it goes up in flames. Then I’ll sit and watch the flames of the bridge-burning. I know it hurts, and when it does, I’ll cry. I cry more than people need to know. It hurts every single time someone walks away from me, even though I’m the one that caused it. I’ve caused it—I’ve pushed them hard enough to go away.
I know I want them to stay, but when there’s even a sign they want to go or an unfounded accusation, I can’t make myself fight for them. When I do fight for them, it goes back to word vomit. I’ve been accused of gaslighting people, and that again is never the intent. I’ll try to explain myself. When someone accuses me of something like that, I become angry. My emotions take over.
I try to protect myself by making sure they don’t think they’re being gaslighted anymore, but it’s by doing something more destructive. They leave, and I’ll find myself alone. Seeing them leave hurts, but is it worth it? How am I supposed to know? I don’t know if it’s worth it. Sometimes the world feels lighter once they’re gone.
It’s almost as if they were disposable when I know they weren’t. I’ll miss them later on; I always do. I never know how much I’ll miss someone until they’re gone. Once they’re gone, my life keeps going, their life keeps going, and I don’t know where they are.
I wish I did know where they are. I don’t think I’m the victim, and I won’t paint them as a villain. I know in some cases, I’m the bad guy. I hurt people. I don’t know what else there is to do but I do recognize that maybe I am the bad guy in some of my friendships. I’ll do what I can to improve who I am.
That’s all I can do—take the notes from the past and recognize I was the bad guy, I was the bad person, and I can forgive myself and let myself move on to become a better person.