This morning I was having a conversation with a friend. I know I often have conversations but this one, this one got me to thinking.
I am a fixer. A ‘Give me your problems and I will find a solution’, type of woman. Does not matter who you are or what the problem is, by nature, I want to make it all better for you. And now my brain has veered off into how the hell did I become a fixer? Why do I yearn to take on the world’s problems and make them right? Why (until now) did I always chose men who needed their hands held at every turn?
Small problems (which are not even problems) such as helping someone locate a hard to find item. Trying to put their fears to rest when attempting something new. My response to that is always the same, ‘Imagine the absolute worst thing that could happen and after that anything that occurs is going to be a piece of cake. Walk in the park. Cake in the park.’ You get it.
Larger problems can take up a lot of my time. I mull over them. I twist it this way and that. Looking for the hole that I can wiggle through. The hole that is going to lead to the answer, or at least a partial solution.
This is draining. My focus is no longer on myself, on my care and T’s. It becomes super stressful. In the past my way to handle it would have been to drink.
Today as I was having my conversation I made a sudden connection. And that connection leapt along the synapsis of my brain and made more connections. Until I stopped watching the gems fall and turned to face my friend. I wanted to shout this discovery from the rooftops, however that would require getting dressed and I am just not up for that at the moment.
I have a friend who is going through a really tough time. When I look at her life, I am surprised that she is still standing. The amount of shit life has thrown her way, and the fact that she is here, present and alive, amazes me. She is an absolute rock, one of the strongest women that I am privileged to have as a part of my tribe.
She text me early this morning and I was reading over them, giving half explanations without betraying her confidence in me and it happened.
I am not put on this earth to be the caretaker of anyone else. (Well with the exception of T but that should go without saying.)
It is not up to me to scoop up the troubles that plague the world. It is not up to me to point out how by taking a step over this way, could change how you view things. It is not up to me, to fix the problems that they come to me with.
What is up to me?
To be a damn good friend. To offer my shoulder and my ear. To listen and at the same time when I speak, to be wise and offer up my own experience and solution to an equatable problem. Something that they can mull over themselves and it might help them to find the solution to their own issues. Or it may not.
Another part of this rebounds from a conversation that K3 and me were having. In it she stated that she felt we were brought into people’s lives so they can benefit from our experiences. I disagreed. We can tell people about what occurred but they are still going to make their own choices based on their own morals and life experience. Not ours.
What do we learn if we take all the advice others give us?
And that is another part of the epiphany which just came to me.
I am a big believer in learning my own lessons. No matter the pain that I am going to feel, I will face what I need to do. (Now I do, previously I may have stuck my head in the sand before facing my problems)
I need to speak less and listen more.
I need to be a friend, a warm hug, a place to shelter without compromising my emotional well-being. And I can be.
Because as I journey forward along the twisted path that my life is, I learn more and more about my role and place on this planet.