Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Oxygen Masks On

Dealing with hard times alone can be one of the biggest battles to overcome, yet watching someone you love go through a hard time when you know it's a hill they have to climb on their own, for me…is even harder. I never quite understood my grandmother. She was strict…all the way old school. Made me eat spinach, and didn't let me drink that tall glass of Hawaiian Punch until I completed every ounce of that pile of goo. She loved so hard, she worried about us all. She loved so hard, sometimes it hurt. My mother loves the same way, though not strict at all, she would give anything for the ones she loves. Sometimes I wish God didn't make me the same way. Once I've committed to loving you…I never stop. No matter how much I am hurt; there is no off button.

Now some would say this is a good thing; God loves us the same way. Unconditional…but though I strive to be Christ like, I am nothing compared nor have the power to endure every condition. I've dealt with this, with friends, with some family, and in relationships with men. It's something in me that wants to save them. I put myself on the line…almost every time. I put my money, my heart, my faith in them, and in the end I realize I definitely should not have done it. We are not meant to be saved by some-one or some-thing; we are meant to save ourselves through a faith that relies only upon God. I know the Tyler Perry movies lead us to believe that Mr. Prince Charming is going to come our way, and help us move on and forget all that we have gone through…but it's only a movie. Reality is, the only reason they were able to find love or be happy, is because they moved on and saved themselves first.

When you put your hopes and dreams into someone else, or base your happiness upon how someone else makes you feel…you have set yourself up for failure. Because no one is perfect, and at some point that person is going to have to fight their own battle, and they are not going to be able to focus their attention on saving you anymore. I am not being pessimistic. There are people who are happy, who work together to resolve their issues together and separately, but at the end of the day those people are happy with themselves first.

No one can be changed by someone else. People change because they want to change. So if that friend or significant other is not the person you hope them to be, then maybe that friend or significant other isn't for you. It takes a strong person to accept what they need, and who strays away from what they want because what we want may not even exist; what we want may not be best for us at all. Can you look that person in the eye and see who they truly are? Can you look at them and see they are who you need in your life? Potential is a scary thing to deal with. You can see potential in anyone, but do they see it in themselves? How long do you sit back and watch them try and piece together the pieces to the puzzle? You can want so much for a person, but if they don't want it for themselves…then who cares? You can want to save someone from their troubles and trials, but at the end of the day they have to figure it out on their own. I am not, by any means saying leave someone because they are going through a difficult time, but I am saying evaluate the situation before you hold on to something that is empty.

As my cousin has explained to me before, when the flight attendants explain how the oxygen masks work, never once do they say put the oxygen mask on the person sitting next to you first. They say, place the oxygen mask on you first, and then assist other people. If you are not dealing with yourself, helping yourself, saving yourself first, then you will all suffer. I've had to deal with my battles on my own, and as I said before it has been one of the biggest battles to overcome; but I couldn't wait on someone to complete me or help me believe in me…I did that before, and once that relationship ended, I was right back where I started. I, and don't get me wrong…even today it is still hard…because I cannot deny wanting the fairytale ending; the family; the kids; the big house with a porch and swing…that is the next level in life I long to take, but I am starting with me first. Whatever I put out, is what I will get back. I am dealing with myself, learning to love myself as I am now, and taking the steps to improve myself…and I am letting others do the same. No matter how much it hurts to see them be heartbroken, or disappointed, or overwhelmed…we can only save ourselves. Are you willing to do it?


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