The Wisdom of Youth

17 Mar

Every time he leaves it is a hard battle that I fight and for a few days I really hate the person I become. Moody, insensitive, noncomunicative…it’s like I am PMSing in overdrive.

I was at work a couple days after the last time he flew off into the night sky and trying to refocus my life by pouring the meager amount of energy I had into my kids. I was talking with two of the girls that tend to battle a lot with depression and one of them was telling me how she had been having a really good week because her friend was in town. This friend was slightly more than just a friend as they had been seeing each other before he had had to move away. Regardless of any residual feelings or lingering hopes, this boy had come into her life and reminded her what it was like to be happy at a time she was finding it hard to get out of bed each day. He was going to be leaving soon, however, and the realization had dawned on her that she liked being happy, she liked feeling excited about the day, and she liked not constantly being at war with herself. Her concern which we were discussing was that she wasn’t being happy for herself, her happiness was centered around the existence of another person, so the questioned that remained was,  “how do I find my happiness for myself?”

I tell this anecdote because it caused a revelation in myself as often conversations do with my teens. I learned this lesson once…and then again…and I’m sure more times after that. In my teenage years I was immobilized by my fears and sadness, but my 20’s brought the age of self-sufficiency in which I was confident and able to find happiness within myself and for myself. Somewhere along the way, however, perhaps I became to comfortable with the idea that I would always be able to separate myself from becoming co-dependent or stuck in a hole in which the only sunshine was another person.

I am by no means at that point, but in talking with this 15 year old girl, I realized I had been slipping and perhaps it was time to find some time to focus on my inner me…find my sunshine.

As fate would have it, that night the conversation continued, in a way, into an evening walk with LP. She knows me and knows my needs and as I was discussing my recent frustrations about the situation I have found myself in, she had some interesting insight. I had told Michigan the night before what I had been feeling about myself since his departure. He offered to give me space if I needed it and my response was, “I don’t know what I need, but I know it is not that.” Immediately I questioned that logic, and LP was the one to give a voice to why.

Michigan and I had just spent four glorious days together…non-stop, together all the time, for four days. Typically this would drive me insane (and to be honest it had started to by the end) because I am the girl that needs my me-time. I thrive on it. Him leaving should have signaled the beginning of that much needed space, but because the immediate physical distance became so great, I was still feeling the need for some sort of connection. I couldn’t make plans for next weekend then go on radio silence for two days because that is not an option for us. What I want is to sit in silence and be held, what I get is talking or nothing. See the pickle?

I still have yet to figure out the solution, but everything heals itself in time. Time will bring him closer or will end us. My hope is that time will bring clarity and understanding. There is a lesson I need to learn in this, and with luck I will learn it and everything will once again make sense. Right now I just have to find a way to be comfortable with the unknown.

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