On my way home, after a conversation with a friend about another friend of mine, I wasn’t in touch with, I started feeling guilty about the balls I dropped in 2023 as regards my friendships.
I began to think that maybe I could have given more or that I could have done more, then bam! I reminded myself of how horrible 2023 was to me. How I struggled to stay sane in every way. How it took a toll on me financially, emotionally, physically, and in every way possible.
I reminded myself that if I forget everything, I can’t forget that the same year took my 60-year-old mother with her, which is after I had traveled back and forth between two continents as she was newly diagnosed with cancer.
Also, I quickly reminded myself of how I had to be a “big girl” for her burial and particularly, the endless tears when I was genuinely tired of everyone and everything around me.
It then dawned on me, that even with those “heavy” battles that I wasn’t prepared for, I still did my best with friendships. I know I did. And that in itself should be enough for me to live with myself.
If anyone needed to extend grace to themselves and cut themselves some slack, it would be me.
I need to know I am human and can’t control everything or everyone. And I am not the problem (lol!). I am so critical of myself that I tend to always deeply take the blame for everything that comes in contact with me, but no, not this time. 2023 was ‘A’ year, and I did my best.
Anyway, as I approached my bus stop, I whispered to myself, “Just give yourself grace Olayinka, have mercy on yourself. Dammit”!
I also thought to myself that maybe I am the one surrounding myself with needy people. Perhaps I need to expand my friendship to healthy people who wouldn’t need me to hold anything up. Relatively!
Friendships at this stage should be wholesome. Of course, there are downs, but friends should need you to walk by/with them as they navigate their downs, not them expecting you to navigate it for them.
Finally, I might also have to tell myself the truth that I sometimes attract users, who after they get what they want, are okay to leave. At least per year, I attract a user that sticks close but disappears once they have “used” me.
This year, “I no go gree sha”. No one is coming into my circle to use and ‘dump’ me while making me feel like I was the one who dropped the ball. Even if I dropped the ball and you want to play, you will pick it up, dear. Yep!
P.S.: 2023 was great for me in terms of friendship. People stood with and for me, and I did for them as well. However, as the over-thinker that I am, losing one person in my circle is like losing everyone. Lol!