It is Saturday morning, I am sitting on the couch with two dogs asleep next to me and one on the floor. Scanning through Facebook as most people do when they wake up. And as the brain tends to do, it wandered off into a new subject that I didn’t even plan on thinking about, but alas I was there… thinking about it. It all started when I noticed that a particular “friend” blocked me. It was cool, she wasn’t anyone that I had met in person, the wife of a former classmate. He was someone I had a lot of political debates with. And when I say political debates, I mean he threw insults at me and called me names, even went so far as to do an unprovoked attack on my husband. Because this is where we are at in this day and age. Social media, politics, keyboard warriors, etc., it has become a toxic environment for any relationship.
I have lost a lot of people in my life since I started my career change. I started to see things through different lenses, looking past my own comfort zone, my community and way of life to really absorb everything around me and I vowed to make changes.
With those changes comes loss.
They aren’t always easy, hell, my own brother blocked me on Facebook and doesn’t really talk to me because he doesn’t view things the way that I do. That is the problem. We don’t want to converse about opposing views, we want to argue. We fight to make people see things the way we do… which in itself isn’t bad, but it is when you insist that they change or you block them, stop talking to them, attack them personally and professionally… that is the problem. Our society has always had people that disagree and, for the most part, remained civil. Not today, however, we are at a breaking point. Fuck, we have entire news stations that are set up as propaganda and no one blinks an eye. But they will argue that other news stations “lean” to the other side. They won’t take that step back and take an objective look.
Now, I have been guilty of that as well. I am very passionate about things and I have dug in my heels from time to time, I will admit that. However, it has gotten to the point where people have stopped calling me (and my husband because he is so unfortunate to have married me), hanging out with us, etc. When did it become so bad? When did a personal opinion, view, belief system become the reason that people just walk away?
I have spent the last 8 years cultivating who I am as a person, honing in on what my soul says to me, finding what makes me feel good as a human being, someone that I can look in the mirror and be at peace with when I leave this earth. What I have gotten in return, the vitriol, the hate, the gossip, etc., has been shocking and heartbreaking on some levels. People don’t think it gets back to me what is said when I am not around, but it does. People who claimed to be friends, some very good friends at one time, have said some pretty nasty fucking things about me and I am 100% aware of that. It will never be forgotten.
All of that being said, I will not change. I will continue to lose people in my life because growth is difficult. Molting from a shell of who I was into the amazing being I am becoming is uncomfortable at times. Thankfully, my DH has been supportive and understanding of all of these changes. He takes the time to listen to my reasons and has difficult conversations with me on things he disagrees with. Together we come to an understanding, learning from each other and making ourselves better in the long run. This is how it should be every time.
I have learned that not everyone is meant to be in our lives for our whole lives. Some people came into your life when they needed someone the most and others because you needed someone. Some are meant to stay and others are meant to leave. Nothing is permanent in this world. In Buddhism it is said that it is our attachment to people, things, places, etc., that we believe will make us happy and content in life. But it is that attachment that makes us unhappy. It is when we thing we need these things to be happy and they leave or we lose our “things” that we have those feelings of sadness, suffering and pain. Going into situations knowing that nothing is permanent allows us to enjoy what we have while we have it and to be thankful we had that time when they are gone.
So, I will continue to grow, doing my best to make the most of the rest of my life, living it the way I feel best living it. People are welcome to be a part of it or not. I will hug the ones near to me and wish the best for those who decided not to leave. However, I will continue to have the right intention, right speech, right action, right effort, right livelihood, right mindfulness, and right concentration moving forward.
Moving forward without the people I have lost and thankful for those that are yet to come.