I have a little confession.
I am a reformed drama queen.
Depending on who you ask, I can still drum up the drama with the best of them if the circumstances are right.
You could probably round up 100 people who would say I can talk until the cows come home.
The only problem is… I'm not saying ANYTHING.
I can tell you about my hair, my kids, anecdotes about all the goofy things I get into, but I rarely ever REALLY dish.
I have an issue with burying my real feelings.
With feeling too good to cry, even when I really need to.
My closest friends don't hear from me for weeks sometimes, outside of social media and texting, that is.
I like to look like I've got this. I can handle it all. Show me something I can't do.
I don't talk about my fears, for fear that someone will exploit them.
I don't talk about my pain. Who wants to hear me whine? No one.
Almost everything of substance, I will try to bury, because vulnerability SUCKS, in my opinion.
But lately some things have REALLY been pushing my buttons. At work, with family, and even with friends.
I can blame the people who do incredibly insensitive things. Stupid things. Blatant committers of social faux pas with no apologies. People who are so bold, they will even act offended with you that you don’t welcome their selfishness with open arms.
But the truth is I have myself to blame.
You know one thing I have to give my former-dramatic-self credit for?
I rarely used to have to tell someone NOT to do something twice.
People always seemed to know that I would fly off the handle for a certain list of offenses. As our friend Drake would put it, I went “0 to 100 real quick.”
However, I’m a mother now; also a wife, professional, a student, a law abiding, tax paying, contributing member of society and I want to be viewed a certain way.
So I’ve been trying to bridge the gap between threatening to throat punch people when I’m at my wits end and being a doormat for the sake of peace. I’ve tried the tactful art of hinting. Of backing off of certain people and waiting for them to take the hint.
But you know the old adage – “give an inch and they take a mile?” It’s the story of my life as of late. People usually take my kindness for weakness.
And while I would really like to resort to some good old fashioned, gloves off, Shanika-like behavior, I look at how far I’ve come and continue to choose the high road.
But I think it’s time for me (And you - that’s why you’re here after all, to learn from my shenanigans!) to be direct with the things that are bothering me.
To stop harboring my feelings for fear of how it will make someone else feel when they’ve been making me feel bad all along.
To quit worrying about how “Becky” is going to take it when I tell her she’s a self-involved brat and I’m over it.
To let go of friendships and connections that no longer serve me or grow me in any way shape or form.
To face the fact that everything I say won’t be nice, and know that I can still remain tactful and not come out of my character or revert to socially unacceptable behavior for someone of my age and station.
Everything I have to say won’t be nice, but it’s about time I started to say it, because the only person suffering from my lack of REAL communication is ME. So if you don’t have anything nice to say either, you can come and sit by me.