I don’t think that I have ever gotten this right...I always feel like I am going to be way more important to people than I actually am...is this just wishful thinking? And I seem to fail to value my importance to others, minimizing my importance to them when they really need me or depend on me.
It has plagued me all my life. I can remember a few years ago, in a very close social circle, I would just fade out. Just kind of go dark. And I didn’t really think too much about it...I didn’t feel like the members of this group really noticed or even missed my presence. One of my friends took me to task on this. She said that it hurt her feelings when I just stopped responding and disengaged. I was shocked. I didn’t realize at all how my behavior affected her. I really thought that I wasn’t all that important to any of them so my presence or lack thereof was really not valued.
I never realized until that day that self involvement can present like this. I was being self centered but I didn’t really see it. Before that time, I had always felt like to be self involved was to think so much of oneself, yet here I was in a situation where I really didn’t think too much of myself at all, and I was there in this weird place causing someone else distress and I totally didn’t mean to.
I can point to a lot of reasons as to why I am this way. Growing up as an Army brat you get good at leaving and the world still turns. You promise all your friends that you will still be there for them and you try, but the miles and years take their toll and you end up just drifting a part. We didn’t have the technology back then that made it easy to stay in contact...but honestly I don’t think it would have been different for me.
I could provide you a list of reasons why I am the way I am and perhaps you might understand better...but none of my explanations would really address this deep seated and long standing desire to be important to others and mostly feeling like I am not. I tend to evaluate myself out of any type of influential position or feeling super connected to people. Kind of an easy come, easy go thing.
I feel like most of the people I know, don’t show up so what does it matter anyway. I know that sounds very self pitying but I don’t mean it that way. And still I know that self pity is operating at some level.
I think what I can see today that I did not see before is that I am never going to get it right....I am always going to feel like I should be more important to people who really don’t give a shit and feel like I am not that important to people that I am actually quite important to. This is my lot. To struggle to see my actual value and level of importance accurately.
I feel like I am having a hard time connecting with people lately. I know that other people feel it too because they have mentioned it to me. I think the pandemic coupled with the disposability factor the internet provides and undercuts relationships, I think we are more disconnected from each other than ever.
I am sure that I am not the only one foundering with an accurate self appraisal of how important is important enough...my struggle to find my right sizedness in this world true, real and relevant to each day.
I guess what I am really trying to say is that I want to be connected to others but feel a bit baffled about it a great deal of the time. Like my super power is disconnection not connection. It is kind of like a person who really wants friends but spends all their time trying to be friends with people who don’t even like them...and totally misses the friends they actually have that love them and really just want to be there for them.
Humility is a hard thing because when you think you have it, you don’t and when you are trying to sort it all out, other defects of character come in and take over leaving one’s quest for humility by the way side.
I do not want to be more important than someone else, and I do not want to be less. I want to show up for the people in my life and then have them show up similarly in mine. At 51, I guess today, I just have to be honest about the imbalance I feel and my inability to ever get this some where close to balanced.
What I do know is that I care...deeply about the people in my life and look for ways to show them and show up for them. Perhaps the inquiry should just end there. Care about what you are putting out and don’t worry about what you are receiving...that seems more spiritual but also sometimes out of reach. I guess the best I can do on any given day is to be willing to see that which I am missing and to reach out even when I feel injured, protective or am sure that I don’t really matter. Because I know what I want more than anything is to really let the people that I care about to know and feel the care...and that matters more than what I feel like I receive back. Really.