Wednesday, December 21, 2011

A real fine place to start...

Today I’m starting something new.  I kept thinking I’d wait until January 1st to make some major life changes.  But if I have to wait until it’s natural to have a “resolution” then it’s not ever going to be a natural change.  So December 21st is the day.  Actually December 20th was the day, but since I didn’t start yesterday this way, today is my first full day of the new and improved Cassie. 
Have you ever wanted something so much that you push so hard and in the process hurt yourself and others and in the end realized all you really did was push any chance of actually getting what you wanted away?  Welcome to my world.  This has been the story of my life for about two years.
But as of yesterday, after one of the worst mornings of my life, I realized something.  Something that I always knew and have advised others to do many times, but for some reason never applied to my own situation.  Stupid, I know.  I have realized, or more appropriately, decided to apply, the ideas that you get out of something what you put into it and you can only change your behavior not someone else’s.
Sometimes it’s easy when we feel we have been wronged to blame the other person and put all the responsibility for fixing it on them.  We know our behavior isn’t appropriate either, but we sit back and say, “I’m not changing until they fix what they did to me.”  If this is your line of thought, let me offer you an opportunity to skip out on some serious heartbreak.  Don’t do it.  You are responsible for your own actions regardless of what someone else does (or doesn’t do) to encourage ill behavior from you.
For a long time I have been really crappy to someone who means the absolute world to me.  Once upon a time, they wronged me.  I forgave them, sure, but I expected major changes along with that apology.  When those changes didn’t come as quickly as I wanted them to, I allowed my behavior to change.  I became a person that was difficult to get along with, always super sensitive and overly emotional.  I thought if they could see that I was hurting they would step up their efforts to make the changes they kept promising.  But in reality, all I did was hurt them back, cause them to have major doubts in who they are and allow for situations that created a lot of resentment in both of us.
It took a very heartbreaking event in our relationship for me to make this decision and I hate that it came to what it did, but I finally realize that whether or not they ever change, I am far more unhappy in who I have become trying to get them where I think they ought to be then I am with anything they actually do.  I have allowed this to change things about my personality that I used to love.  I have allowed this to make me a distrusting, nagging, mean person.  And I am not any of those things.  I am a happy-go-lucky, easy going, fun loving person who people used to really enjoy being around.  It’s time to get that girl back.
So today I’m starting there.  I’m going to be the nice, sweet, friendly, compassionate, fun Cassie that I was when this person and I became friends in the first place.  I’m going to do the little things I used to do that let people know I care about them.  I’m going to live my life a little lighter and quit letting every little thing have such a heavy emotional weight.  I’m going to stop getting my feelings hurt so easily.  I’m going to stop pushing for the things I need.  Instead I’m going to give the people I love the things I want them to remember about me instead of the things we all want to forget.    
I can only be responsible for my actions.  And not only can I, but I have to be.  I am responsible for everything I think, say and do.  So my December 20th resolution is to, from this point forward, in all my relationships with friends, family, coworkers, etc., live out one of my favorite Bible passages… Ephesians 4:29, 31-32. 
“Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only that which is helpful for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen… Get rid of all bitterness, rage and anger, brawling and slander, along with every form of malice.  Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you.”
Every day is a new day to wake up and choose to be the person you want to be.

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