I have this thing with integrity. Or maybe I have this thing with duplicity. Ugh. This is a hard paragraph to start.
So I have this thing where I expect people to be consistent with their actions and attitudes but I struggle with that same thing myself. Term it what you will.
Being honest about who you are and the things that have made you who you are is difficult. There's so much history built into every decision--connections or disconnections that have to be considered, current climate, personality tendencies. So attitude in the midst of emotional baggage might look a whole lot different than the attitude that emerges when one is whole and healthy.
I've said on multiple occasions that I really don't care what others think of me. That statement isn't untrue, but it isn't the truest statement I've ever made either. I very much care what some people think. I want their approval. I want their love and attention and I need reassurance of it on a fairly regular basis. That's a hard admission for someone who needs solitude to survive.
Or really, maybe "hey, I'm needy" is a hard reality regardless.
And since I'm laying things out here, allow me to state clearly that I'm not writing from a place of security now. There are so many arenas where I have no idea where I stand and that's making me weirdly shaky (which is making typing a bit more difficult that it usually is).
When I started pulling out of things to assess them, I realized a couple of things:
1. I stayed in some arenas because I was scared what people would say about me if I wasn't around.
That sounds healthy, doesn't it? Does it mean my relationships with all of those people were bad relationships? I don't think so. But letting go of it means I may not know what's happening in the inner circle and that's hard because of the speculation--that something is being said about me, or, on the other side, that I removed myself because I think less of someone else.
2. Sometimes I'm afraid of what certain people think about me or how they are presenting me to others even when I don't value the opinions of those people.
Which, inevitably, means I end up obsessing over that person's opinion. Or tip-toeing around the people we share. Which, also, super duper healthy.
I did it to build. I wanted to be a part of those groups because I wanted to feel like I belonged. After all these years and all the progress Christ has made with me, I still struggle with wanting to feel like I belong to something even when I know I belong to Him. I'm making my peace with the enoughness that is found in Christ--slowly.
I think this is a step in that direction. With a million more to go.