On Being Unapologetic and Friendships

Before there was Awkward, Pretty Little Liars, Surbagatory, Vampire Diaries, yes, Vampire Diaries, there was One Tree Hill…

Before there was Awkward, Pretty Little Liars, Surbagatory, Vampire Diaries, yes, Vampire Diaries, there was One Tree Hill. (Yes, I just dated myself). The opening bars of Gavin DeGraw’s song “I don’t want to be” was enough to make me drop everything that I was doing to glue myself in front of the telly for a whole hour. Their teenage angst on self-discovery, identity and making a mark in the world which deeply resonated with me and made  unfortunately my family ate burnt ugali  on more than one occasion. Oops!

Reflecting on these lyrics in 2017, I can still relate to them in my late twenties. Because you would think that issues like peer pressure only affects you in your teens but thanks to social media feed, it’s magnified. It’s all about whose wedding is being featured on TV, who’s globe-trotting, who’s bought X acres and has ventured into agribusiness…well, you get my drift but as Myleik Teele is constantly mentioning on her podcast, social media is only a highlight reel of people’s lives.

Part of human nature is the need for acceptance. However, in order to receive this kind of  “love”, we do ridiculous things like dumb ourselves down, pretend we enjoy things that absolutely bore us or disgust us or even numb ourselves. If you don’t speak up, you won’t get what you want. I was one of those people that you could cut in line and I would allow you to get away with it. Because I didn’t want to draw attention to myself but on the inside, I was boiling with rage as my feet ached-who did that serve really? No one because I was the one who would be in a bad mood the whole day thereafter.

I have (slowly) accepted that not I do not have to love everyone. Yes, I will be nice to all people as my basic human Christian duty but also I don’t have to be loved by everybody. If you don’t understand why I geek over reading,  or being a pescaterian or a logophile or supporting X political party.

That’s OK.

I won’t  make a big deal out of what you do or do not do.

The older  I get the more the “seasonal friends” becomes a  reality to me. People move, grow families, pass away and time becomes an increasingly scarce resource.It is a fact of life.  I have made peace with the fact people are in your life to fulfil a specific purpose for a specific time and its good to let them go and so that you both can grow.I am sure you know that at some point in time you become BFFs with someone because you were into the similar things. Then overtime, you outgrow the emotional and sometimes physical luggage because you have to take an additional weight in terms of life responsibilities. Take on only what you can handle and what you carry with you on life’s journey.

I would rather spend my resources (time, money, emotional energy) doing the things that not only give me inner satisfaction and fulfilment. When we give our genuine selves to the world then we are likely to attract people who are like us or hold similar values. If we try to play the chameleon and try to force a fit, it will eventually show.

Pretence takes too much energy.

So why waste time when you could be creating awfully good memories with a different person, book or organisation.

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2 Responses to On Being Unapologetic and Friendships

  1. Spot on, in accordance to one point of view. But, if you do that, it will be extremely difficult to build lasting relationships. We all change with time therefore maybe, it would be prudent not to pretend but accept the other person’s change. It is sometimes sad that people drift away because of distance and other responsibilities, but don’t we owe it to ourselves to maintain valuable relationships as much as we can.

    Like

  2. Rosey says:

    Great piece. I believe that people are meant to be in your life for a season and once that season has passed, you need to let go and move on. Never change who you are in order to fit into someone else’s life. You are important, do what makes you happy and the right people will be drawn to you.

    Liked by 1 person

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