Social media is a hall of mirrors for most people; it’s primarily bright shining moments. I’m guilty of sharing a lot. Often, I reference periods where I’m lonely, anxious, or experiencing things that seem elusively difficult to solve. I don’t mention details because I am careful about revealing someone else’s story or issues while delineating mine. It’s my story to tell because it’s my life. But I think I’m respectful about needlessly giving someone else an additional slap. I’ve seen behind the curtains of so many people’s lives. Most of them have some heavy secrets and burdens.
I’ve written about how I was guilty of imploding my marriage. Most of the blame is mine; I said so from the beginning. Many people recoiled. “You don’t just SAY those things.” Uh – yes, I do. Not all the blame is mine, but so much of it is that it is just honest to say so without qualification. No one can ever know what goes on in a life, much less a marriage. Even if they think they know, they will have their spin and narrative about it. We all do this.
While I made many missteps starting in October last year, I also found a way to wake up. I’d be dead if I didn’t lose all the weight. Had I not started counseling, lack of sleep would’ve driven me crazy. In addition to all those more significant moments, I stepped back and decided that it was time to find a way to create lemon moments, apologize to people, and find ways to stop fueling negativity. Like so many of you know, it wasn’t a straight line. I didn’t have the intelligence or ability to do it evenly or without making a mess of my marriage. You have to make omelets once you break the eggs, but lamenting that you no longer have eggs is pointless.
Other than a few weeks ago when I had to threaten to kill one of my horrific neighbors (my Bobby Dean moment), I haven’t lashed out or engaged in megaphone interpersonal moments. Even when the other person tried their best to get me to be angry, I found a new way to engage. I’ve told so many people how much they mean to me, that I apologize for not understanding them sooner, and have tried to be a better me.
I got accused of not being the same me.
They are not wrong. I’m not.
Had I stayed the old me, well, I’ve already said it, it’s likely I might not be here – and that’s before my guts tried to strangle me on a random Monday.
I have a lot of regrets. Don’t we all?
Regrets are only effective when you figure out a way to morph them into an action that helps others while not repeating the same mistake yourself.
I also got accused of being egotistical and selfish, in part because I am evangelical about weight loss and finding ways to get to your goals. I can see why they’d think that, too. Just because I’m wrong about so much or have behaved like a hungry monkey at a salad bar doesn’t mean that I’m not right about some things. I’m equally enthusiastic about mental health counseling, too – in part because it is something I learned the hard way and firsthand. That’s why I’m qualified to talk about it in the personal way that I do.
The beauty of social media, a blog, or even a TV channel is that you can change it if you don’t like what you see. You can change your life if you want to as well.
I am not the sum of my mistakes. That doesn’t mean I’m not accountable for them, though. In parting, I’d like to say that I’m often the first to say, “I don’t know,” or “I’m sorry,” now. It’s shameful that I didn’t learn the lesson sooner.