A decade ago if you asked me to describe myself, the first word out of my mouth was “nice.” I used to pride myself on “being nice.” Somewhere between my former (crazy) boss hacking my work email, my dead-beat dad’s girlfriend calling me a “money-hungry little bitch,” and one of the many, many men (or should I say “boys”) telling me “you’re the most amazing girl, but I just don’t like you like that,” I lost some of my “niceness.” Each step down the road of my life, each chink in my armor, each hurtful word said about me caused me to misplace more and more of what my mom used to call my “savior-ness.” Somewhere along the line, I stopped wanting to save, help, and be kind to everyone, but instead just wanted to survive without letting anyone see what a scared, hurt person I had become.
So: I developed this biting, sarcastic, and (admittedly, at times) mean personality. It’s not who I thought I was, and it’s not who I want to be. But I’m stuck; stuck feeling like the only way to protect myself from hurt is to do the hurting (but this, my friends, ALWAYS backfires); stuck not being able to hold my tongue when the perfect time to insult somebody is presented; stuck alienating people because I want to be alone. If you’re alone, nobody can hurt you, right?
Yet I still hold out this tiny, tiny sliver of hope that somebody won’t want me to be alone; they won’t want me to have to face the world alone; they want me to become who I used to be. But there’s nobody. Sure, I have friends–AMAZING friends, actually — and to quote my favorite sociology professor from my undergrad, “there is an interconnectedness in this world–we are never truly alone,” — yet I’m continually left with just one person: myself. I’m starting to think I’m the last person I should try to count on.
There is a beauty in this, though–a common denominator–and that’s me. I’m the one who is self-aware enough to know this, so I am the one who can change it. I just have to figure out how to do this. A little self-reflection is necessary, and even some self-love (not that kind, you pervert… get your mind out of the gutter).
I’m going to do this. I’m going to again think that my best quality is that I’m “nice” (or again, as my mom would say, a “savior”). Even if I end up alone in the end, at least I’ll have gone down knowing that I did everything in my power to treat others with the kindness everyone deserves.