As I got ready for bed this evening, I started thinking back to a conversation that a friend and I had over SMS. Jake, not his real name, was essentially trying to nail down the triggers I have for someone in my past and I felt that he was completely missing the point and over stating the person’s presence in my current life. I tried to explain to him that I didn’t care, which he didn’t buy, but I admitted that long ago this person had a pull over me that I eventually had to stop trying to figure out. I told Jake that, although I give little thought to the individual now, I believed there was credit still owed to me and I want this person to see that. Jake was upset because he felt there was so many people in my life who were better people and did give me credit, and their approval should matter more because they matter more.
Jake is a person I’ve known for several years, but it’s only been in the last year in which our friendship has blossomed into something crucial to me. It’s funny he said this because whenever he tells me to write I write. When tells me I am a good person I believe it. His approval keeps me going.
My friendships have morphed, weakened, and strengthened as I’ve left behind our little nest for something incomprehensible to them. Some have chosen to let the gap whittle our relationship to acquaintance, others have held on to create a better connection and others just moved along with the change, keeping strong in the places that mattered the most.
As much try, I’ll never be able to completely deny the voice that craves others approval and I find the small self-conscious soul cropping up in the day’s smallest moments, as if it is too embedded in my personality to every actually leave. Yet, maybe Jake is right and I need to give more power to the opinions of those who make my life worth it. If you look at it from that angle, I have all that I need.
There is the friend who constantly calms my frantic post-PCV fears and says, “You are Heather Mangan. You are going to land on your feet.”
The multiple friends who made plans to drive to a place that is not on the way to anything just to see me again.
The ones that tell me to keep writing, always.
The friend who looks me in the eye and says, “I love you.”
Maybe more so than ever, I have good people in my life and to seek approval from anyone else is a waste.