I write about my life and life itself seen through my eyes for who can write through the experiences of others if not their own?

Friday, June 27, 2014

Enough Already!

I was an odd kid. I did crosswords and read books and I was a very good student. In fact I was best in my class.  I was also very shy.  With that combination I should have been a nerd, but I wasn’t.  I got along with my classmates and even the “bad girls” liked me.  Part of the reason was that I was a team player.  I kept their secrets when they confided in me, and I helped them with their homework because…I could.

There was one girl I helped once.  She had been given a very large math homework as punishment for her disruptive behavior.  I offered to do the most difficult problems. She readily agreed, but unlike the other girls I helped who sincerely struggled and later thanked me for my assistance, this one didn’t worry about her assignment and after a couple of days brought the rest of it for me to finish.
I did it probably because I had said I would and because back then I didn’t have the guts to say “No”.
The classmate situation has been repeated throughout my life. And just the same, throughout my life I have bargained for people’s affection and acceptance by doing something for them. Even when it has become clear that the transaction has not been a fair exchange, and often convenience has been disguised in the affection and acceptance I’ve sought, I’ve been afraid to draw the line on what I do or accept aware that it would narrow my chances of being “liked”. We all have issues, that’s mine.
Sometimes we get tired of doing the same and expecting different results…..
When demands to my voluntary work exceed gratitude or when there is no gratitude at all but demand, or at times substandard treatment, it’s time to draw the line.
It’s time to walk away from it.
There is no longer a need in me to be accepted or liked. No longer a desire to bargain for affection. I have reached that point where I value myself and my services and I'll offer them on my terms. When my voluntary work is taken for granted, or I'm disrespected, I don't need to stay.  I think I will always volunteer to do something for others, but not to be liked. I don't need to.
I like myself and I have the guts to say NO.