*Note: Forgive the length of this blog post! It got quite long in a hurry, but I haven’t posted in a while and there have been so many things happening lately. Sometimes you have to get it all out! Like a rant in reverse. 😉
So, every time I feel like I’m nearing the light at the end of the tunnel, something else comes up and stops me in my tracks. Sorry I haven’t been blogging much, but I’ve gone from having literally NOTHING to do to actually having a few offers come my way to work on some very interesting projects…the details of which will be revealed as they become available. 😉
I just had my third surgical procedure in three months. Granted compared to two spine surgeries, the one today was literally nothing. I had my wisdom cut out because they were not coming in properly. When I learned I needed this done, I was told it would potentially be a little complicated. Of course in my recent state of mind, I didn’t take the news well. “Why me? Why do things keep going wrong? Why does everything have to be complicated?” You know, pity party table for one! Well, the procedure actually went totally smoothly and much easier than the doctor anticipated, which made me very happy. Apart from a wicked sore mouth, I’m doing fine and should be back to normal—at least in that department—in no more than a week.
I won’t rehash everything that’s happened since May, Lord knows I’ve done enough of that. There is one thing I’d like to discuss, though. When a person goes through so much in so little time, learns their back is basically never going to return to normal, and being in your 20s learning you’re a nurse who will never be able to work in direct patient care again…they tend to get a little depressed. I knew was down, but didn’t realize how much so. Thanks to the support of my family, I’ve gotten some help for the depression. No, I haven’t been suicidal or anything like that, but I understand now how depressed people can fall into that trap of thinking there is no other way out of their problems. Depression is a legitimate illness which needs treatment. I refused to admit I had a problem. Now, of course, I know I did.
Due to my depression, I began to withdraw from my friends. I still spoke to them some, and even went out a time or two, but did not maintain the same level of communication I had in the past. I had no desire to talk to people some days and would literally leave my phone in my bedroom and not look at it for days. Talking to people about what was going on only made me feel worse and deepen the depression, even though they were genuinely concerned about me and just wanted to know how I was.
Well, one of those friends did not take my silence well. She was very good to me initially. She attended both of my surgeries and made a beautiful wreath for me. In fact, she was the only friend I had who actually visited me at the hospital (not that I’m saying that’s bad, I know some of my friends simply don’t have the time or means to visit people in the hospital due to kids, distance, etc). Anyway, very soon after my second surgery, my parents took me to Dallas to try to help cheer me up from the slump I was in. It worked a little. I was so happy while I was there! I made a mistake though. I continued my newly forming habit of leaving my phone at home and failing to check it sometimes 3 or 4 days in a row. Well, this friend texted me to check up on me, a very kind thing to do, while I was there and I neglected to respond. I got her text at a time when I was unable to respond, and, God’s honest truth, I simply forgot to reply to the text when I was able to.
She then texted me again once I was back home, making it clear she didn’t appreciate me not replying to her text. I replied to it then, but heard nothing more from her. I even sent this person a facebook message in attempt to explain. Nothing. After a while of ignoring me I texted her again, trying one last time to establish communication again. Well, as my life typically goes, she called me literally 20 seconds after my dad called me, leaving me unable to answer her text. Well, I guess that was the last straw because I received a long, quite cold voicemail, followed by a VERY long and even more cold text message basically spelling out that I sucked at being a friend and that I had problems and needed help and that she couldn’t help me.
My immediate reaction was to text her back in attempt to explain, but it fell on deaf ears. She has yet to communicate with me since. At first, I was deeply hurt. Some of the things she said were extremely hurtful and though she stated “she cared,” someone who directly tells you that you have problems and depression, she still treated me like I was just being rude and ignoring her. So its like she knew I was going through something that made me into something I’m not, but turned right around and made me out to be the bad guy for missing one text. Public enemy number one. I wanted desperately to patch things up because I despise confrontation, but then I started to think about some of the things she said. I am not going to repeat them all, but the thing that struck the biggest chord with me was her telling me numerous times “you need help, you have problems, and I can’t help you.” Then my sadness was replaced, for a time, with anger. I didn’t ever recall, NOT ONCE, asking for her help. I merely missed a text from her. Period. So, granted, maybe that did make me a crappy friend, but I was going through a depression so bad I literally was a different person for a while.
Because of that situation, I made more of an attempt to keep in touch with my friends, and thank God, not one other soul shared her feelings of hatred toward me…and believe me when I tell you I missed more than one text from some of them! My other friends were all kind and supportive, simply picking up where we left off, forgetting the whole thing. So, for a while, I harbored a huge resentment for this woman and her treatment of me. If everyone else can be ok with it and understand that depression is a real problem and sometimes things happen that are unintentional.
Then I got help for the depression. I guess it took that whole, messy scenario to finally propel me into action and seek help for the depression I was suffering…because anyone who has suffered from depression knows, you aren’t going to get better unless you want to do it for yourself. Not because someone tells you to. Once I got the help I needed, I got into a better state of mind and was able to start sorting through my feelings with much more perspective. So, after all the cruel things that were said, I realized being upset with her wasn’t hurting anyone but myself. I chose right then and there to let it go, deciding to spend my time being around the people who still cared and wanted to be there for me and actually enjoyed my company—and I theirs. With a clearer grasp on things, I now realize that—though I hardly think it was her intention—she helped me a great deal.
I finally grew up and stopped pitying myself, choosing to direct my thoughts toward the things and people that mattered. I also realized, after some friends reminded me of some things, that perhaps I wasn’t the only person in that scenario who needed help. Once I let it go and wanted to try again to make amends, I was urged not to by practically everyone. It was the opinion of most of my friends and family that, though it would be a good thing to apologize for undue hurt I may have caused her missing that text, that someone who would treat me like that would be very detrimental to the progress I’m making…unless of course she decided to dig deep and look within and realize she was in a very similar situation emotionally. Obviously or she wouldn’t have reacted the way she did.
I have chosen not to attempt communicating with her in the future. If she should attempt to contact me, I will be kind and apologetic, but that whole situation—as many situations born of anger do—made me realize that sometimes people are just not meant to be friends. No matter how badly you want it. It still saddens me to feel that way, but it is very unlikely that the two of us will ever establish a friendship again, regardless. The highest I am aiming for is civility and I am going to have to be happy with that.
Through this whole terrible summer, my life has been flipped upside down. I’m moving out of my house, I’m a nurse who can’t work with patients (in the sense I WANT to work with patients) and it’s been a lot to take in in 3 months! But you have to go through a storm—a really bad storm—sometimes to get to where you’re really meant to be in your life. When bad things happen, it’s very hard to accept that they may be happening for a reason…a reason so amazing and good you couldn’t imagine it in your wildest dreams. In this past three months, I actually was able to get out of a job that was doing more harm than good for me as well as rid myself of a lot of the negativity in my life. I’m choosing to spend my time around people who are positive and uplifting. I’ve parted ways with some people who only brought pain and negativity into my life…because whether you believe it or not, the people you associate yourself with can rub off on you. I choose to let the positive people rub off on me and eliminate the people who enjoy hurting people for sport. It’s like being a child and getting away from the bad influence kids.
Since I’ve made this drastic change in my life, things keep getting better and better. I was able to drop the negative attitude and so many great things have just fallen into my lap! Things I wanted but never asked for…things I wanted, but didn’t even know I wanted until I was able to sweep all the darkness out of my mind. There are still some amazing people I’ve not done well to keep in touch with and I am doing my best to get around to reconnecting with them. I basically made up my mind that I was not going to be weak anymore, allowing all the negativity and hate contaminate my spirit. It’s the best decision I’ve ever made, and it’s become easier and easier to accept the things I don’t “want” to happen and just let them happen…because I know these things are all part of a bigger picture—working to make and mold me into the person I want to be and was meant to be. My happiness is no longer based on making others happy, but rather being kind (which will, in turn make people happy) and being accepting of anything life throws at me.
The storm clouds are clearing and the sunshine is breaking through. Life is good and getting better…and I have more love in my heart for my friends and family than I ever thought I could! Hold fast to the people who genuinely love you. They are the key to helping you get your life back on track. I had to learn the hard way that going around constantly surly, unhappy, and feeling sorry for yourself will never work out well for you. People who hurt inside are typically the first ones to lash out and hurt other people, trying to make sure they’re surrounded with people who are as miserable as they are. It took me over 20 years but I’ve finally figured that out!