"What other people think of me is none of my business."
Wayne Dwyer may have been on to something when he said that. It's a fabulous way of living - and it's a statement that I wish I could totally get behind. But, like many things, it's easier said than done. I try not to get caught up in the opinions others have of me, but sometimes... just sometimes... it's a good idea to hear them out.
I am my harshest critic, you see. And I'd be willing to be that I'm not alone in that. We all dwell on our shortcomings from time to time, we magnify our flaws in our heads and we beat ourselves up unnecessarily but relentlessly. I apologize to others, but I never apologize to myself. I make myself the villain, even when I know something was out of my hands. I convince myself that I'm the problem, not the other person or not something greater when a relationship turns sour. And then I simmer in it.
Today, my landlord dropped by to let me know some tenants who have been causing the rest of us a lot of grief had been given their notice of eviction. The small talk ensued and he asked about Red. It was unavoidable, I guess, so I explained that things hadn't worked out. Simple as that. I mentioned that I was looking for full-time work and that I knew everything would be fine, in time.
"Well, dear, nobody needs to worry about you," he said. "You're the kind of woman who stands on her own two feet. I don't know you very well, but I know that. You're going to do great."
With that he left, and I smiled to myself.
That's precisely the type of woman that I want to be. It's the type of woman that I was raised by. The type of woman that I would be proud to become; the type of woman I want to raise my son. And apparently, that's the type of woman that I am.
I just didn't know it.
And the truth is simple: we are all the type of person that someone else aspires to be. Someone admires your courage, or your strength. Somebody admires your intellect or your style. Perhaps they are too shy to tell you.
In the time we spend telling ourselves that we're not quite there yet, we forget to celebrate how far we've come. In the time we spend admiring others, we forget to take a good, hard look at ourselves.
Wherever you are, whomever you are and however you got to this place is amazing. A gift. And you are fucking AWESOME.
Keep that in mind. You're welcome.