No, I'm not referring to that truly awesome song by one, Lupe Fiasco. I'm talking about the kick you give people to make progress and the push they give you for making them do something they didn't want to do.
I'm full of bad suggestions but I certainly never thought I'd be the kind of person who routinely thinks about things that have already happened. If I take one more minute thinking "did I do the right thing?" or "was that too much?" or "what the crap, man?! why's it got to be such a big deal?" I might just scream.
I try to respect people's requests, but if they seem like self-reinforcing negative behaviors, I can't be a part of that. Now, I'm not so bad as some of my friends, making everyone they know a "project," but I do refuse to be treated "like everyone else" simply because that's easier. If that takes "providing a lesson" so be it.
I'm not like "everyone else." Shoot, everyone else isn't like everyone else. Chances are we've all gotten to a point where there are common characteristics to our friends. For me, I can safely say all of my friends are considerate, interesting, fun individuals. They, individually, are each of these things in different ways. Beyond that, they are all unique and bring something different to the friendship table.
So, I don't treat my friends the same. Whether we're friends individually or through a group, my association with each of them is as unique as they are. That might be why I am so against the reality that I may be treated in a particular way because of my friend's association with someone else. What?!? Seriously?! To me that falls somewhere close to me being put on punishment for something my sister did that I didn't even know she did. As in, that just doesn't make sense.
Yesterday I felt like I was being unwillingly placed into one of those types of situations. So I kicked and forced the issue out into the open. I wanted to make it a conversation instead of an issue. I kicked my friend out of their comfort zone and I walked out of mine to meet in a neutral place of mutual exchange. What I got in return was an unbiased, if not guarded, truth. Much appreciated for the trust it commanded. However, not everyone is used to the kind of truth I demand from my friends. I am the greatest friend in confidence and once you have it, my friendship is guaranteed. Your actions speak louder than words. So, if they conflict, I seek truth and resolution. That's what I was looking for yesterday. While I believe we achieved a much better level of understanding through that conversation, I got pushed back.
This is to be expected. Even I am guilty of retreating back to my "safe place" after stepping out of my comfort zone, just to check and make sure I'm ok. While I am almost certain I am making a big deal out of nothing, if going through that exercise made it clear that I am me and no one else, that I cannot be held responsible for the actions of others, and that there is a freedom in the concept of "the individual," then I am okay with being pushed back.
The palms of my hands may be burned from the fall, but I got back up. Now I'm looking around to see where my friend went. I hope they didn't turn and walk away...