My mother told me I was weird many times as I was growing up and throughout my adult life, until she passed away. But, being called weird never made me not weird. Weird, right?
What she was referring to was my philosophy, approach, and management of relationships. All relationships: friends, family, acquaintances, followers and those I follow, social media friends, and that guy at Target. I don’t know where I got this, but I’ve been this way as long as I can remember. When a relationship loses it’s substance, truth, meaning, care, authenticity, thought, and communication, it’s just gone.
It happens, because of the dynamics of reality, circumstances, time, distance, and us humans with all our shit. And it’s okay. It just is. So, I don’t continue to fake it or act like there’s something there, when there isn’t.
I never saw the point in “acting as if”, for the sake of tradition, ritual, family, or friendship. I love and value people and human interaction. My care is genuine. But, when there’s nothing, there’s nothing. I’m still kind though.
A recent example:
On Thanksgiving, a relative texted my wife and I out of the blue. Well, they didn’t actually text me, because they have the wrong number. They used to have my number, but I guess they lost it? I don’t know, but the text read: “So blessed to have you in our lives and to call you family.”
We haven’t spoken in years and now these words? In a text? And come on; “Blessed”?
I didn’t respond. The text wasn’t sent to me. And what am I supposed to say anyway? “Me too”? I can’t. I would have to send a new text, because I can’t respond from whomever’s phone they texted. I wonder what that person thought.
I hear you; communication, right? But, it doesn’t matter, because here’s the thing …
I remember my extended family and how they do drama and make up reality without any factual intel. It’s insane. They don’t want the horse’s mouth. They’d rather get their news from gossip or read between the lines, because they’re so perceptive. They’re not.
It goes like this; we have a conversation (or none at all), then they have a conversation with some other set of relatives I don’t have a relationship with and they create some bullshit drama out of what they think I said and how I feel and then that party perpetuates it to another and guess what the conclusion is. It’s never positive. I must be an asshole. I must be angry. I’m not.
They can read a line that says, “I love you” and see it as devious in some way. It’s really twisted. I’ve seen them do it with other relatives too and then, “Hey, how’s it going. Great to see you.”
Yeah … not for me.
They find me hard to “read”, because I’m not hard to read and I guess that makes me “weird”. They want to read between my lines, when it’s just blank space. My mother gets a pass, because of her status, but like them, she thought there must be some underlying drama or minutiae that’s lingering in the white space!
Nope there isn’t. My book is open and easy. So easy, it’s weird.
So, I’d rather skip the whole thing. Because, the more energy I give to appeasing those “relationships”, the less I have to give to good-quality relationships with people I have a relationship with. Not only would that not be fair to them, I’d be doing myself a disservice.
Here’s to being weird. Cheers.
Photo by Christine Jou on Unsplash