Wednesday, October 6, 2010
We live in two different worlds......What's it like to be YOU?
Have you ever talked to a friend about your issues of life and when they start talking back to you, you realize that they really don't understand your life? That happened to me yesterday. It kind of messed me up a little because it was someone I consider a good friend.... Someone whose opinion I seek on a regular basis... Someone I love, respect, and admire. I've done my best to be transparent with this person. Well, as transparent as I can be for the time we've known each other. And yet, she opened her mouth, began to speak, and it was like... she was talking to a complete stranger. She THOUGHT she was talking to me, but what she was saying was not resonating with my spirit at all because it felt rehearsed... cliche... Hallmark, even. My first emotion was frustration, because I felt like she hadn't really heard what I said before she gave me such a programmed response. It felt judgmental in that moment. The more I thought about it, though, I realized that she and I live in two very different worlds. And the truth is... She has no idea what it's like to be me.
I say all the time that people are a product of their experiences. The way we see the world is directly affected by the way the world has impacted us. In like manner, the impact we choose to have on the world is directly related to the way we see the world around us. What does that mean? It means that no two people, metaphorically speaking, live in the same world. So, the way I see a situation could be largely different than the way someone else does. As was the case here. My friend (lets call her Dawn) came from a place in her own world... a world that is, might I add, particularly black and white, for whatever reason. There's nothing wrong with her world being black and white if she likes it that way. BUT, my world happens to be particularly gray, for lots of reasons, in the area we were speaking about. She didn't take that into consideration before responding to what I had said. She probably has no idea that our worlds are so different. How would she know when I work so hard to keep it a secret?
I realized that not only does she have no idea what it's like to be me every day, I have no idea what her world is really like either. I know one side of it... what makes her laugh, what she loves to do, who she loves to be around. But I don't know her struggles, her issues, her fears, her regrets.... all the things we DON'T say and yet, carry around with us on a regular basis. Why are we so afraid of transparency? Why are we so afraid of giving each other a full view of the worlds we, individually, live in?
We need to understand that everybody is coming from someplace different. Dawn wasn't trying to be judgmental, but she spoke on my situation without understanding the world I live in. That doesn't make her a bad person. I still love, admire, and respect her with my whole heart. But it made me realize that I need to take a step back and really pay attention to the world SHE lives in so that I can make her understand the world I live in.
That's my word... And I'm out.