Today I said “no” twice.
It felt good.
I have a number of people in my life who have tremendous influence on my life. They are indispensable, like my family or my mentors. I like them very much, I have a strong bond with them, but I also have frustrations and heart-breaks with them. Since they are so important for me, contributed to my personal and my professional life substantially, even though they break my heart (I possibly break theirs, too – to be fair), I keep keeping them in my life, loving them, and being nice as much as I can be. Like many people, we hardly talk about our issues, which often means we continue this over-the-surface relationships while deep down both sides are hurt somehow, sometime, over time. We argue sometimes, too. The negative feelings inevitably accumulate and reach a level that cannot be over-looked.
One of my mentors made a comment about me on social media yesterday (which sounded more like an insult to me; considering all the sensitivity around our relationships, it is not unusual that I felt that way. It could have been just an innocent comment, too. But honestly I do not give a darn about the intention of her comment right now…), which was the last drop in our long history. I took it lightly and managed to play low and joking, but it did change me. I wondered why I keep her in my life, visit her whenever I can find time, or call just to say hi, especially that she does not take steps to contact me. I decided it was time that I cut this charade.
Today with my family too I finally said no. No, I did not cut my ties; they are so important to me and I love them. But I also feel inadequate as a family member. They have expectations from me and I do from them, but when we are short in delivering the expectations, you feel nothing but inadequacy and low self-esteem. I am sick of this feeling. It has been a long way. I am tired.
I am not sure whether I should go visit them this year. Last year was horrible in so many different ways and my relationship with my family is a little bit strained. When I mentioned that today, my mom said whatever happened between my family and I was all in the past. She is nice and all, but she does not consider that it is not over for me. The same thing when I am there; my needs or wishes are hardly a priority; I go where they go, travel quite a bit to see them with long trips, find myself in ridiculous dialogues with ridiculous people (people other than my family), and eventually come back even more tired than when I start the trip.
It is my annual holiday and I think I deserve more than this. Like taking a rest and having a say in where and when to go somewhere, if ever. What if I have other things that I would like to do? ……
My family is sad that I consider not visiting them this year. But perhaps I should prioritize my own wishes this time. I have one life and at one point I just would like to feel “good about myself”. Do I not deserve this feeling?
I have been meaning to visit South America for a very long time. I wonder whether I can do it this summer. Or, just have a staycation. At least I would not feel not approved, loved, or respected.