I hope each one of you had a glorious long weekend. I hope that those of you who didn't, made it through with lessons learned and new strength and motivation to attack the week ahead. Did you check on your friends this weekend? Did you make sure that while they were surrounded by families finding joy in each other that they were okay too?
This weekend held a number of teaching points for me. It brought me closer to my own humanity. I like to think so anyway.
How many of us stay in bad relationships because we are terrified of spending the big days all alone? Birthdays, public holidays, family gatherings... nobody really wants to light and blow out their own candles on their birthday cakes. Isn't it better to do that though than to light yourself on fire to keep someone else happy who really doesn't care about your happiness at all? Being alone is not necessarily a life sentence so embrace it while you have it. Learn to love the aloneness.
Teaching point number two was that there is so much value in comparison. Not in the sense of comparing yourself or your life to others but in looking back and allowing yourself to take a moment to understand how far you have come. It's in those moments of appreciating the battles we have fought that we truly see the lessons we needed to learn. It's in those moments that we need to celebrate our own learning and to find joy in the steps we took. When we commit to a life of growth and actually put our backs into it and do the work there will always be moments when we can look back and feel good about our journey. For me, that's reason enough to keep doing the work.
The next thing that hit me like a speeding bus was that we need to be very aware that there is a fine line between giving someone space and stepping out of their space altogether. I don't like interfering in people's family time unless I am expressly invited. I made the (very wrong) assumption that when someone's spouse is around they have everything they could possibly need. Having a wonderful, caring partner doesn't mean that extra love and support isn't needed.
I guess this weekend has taught me all about checking... check on your friends, whether they are involved or not. Check on the ones who you know are alone because very often their minds are far from quiet. Check your own relationships and make sure that you're in them for the right reasons and not due to fear. And check on yourself... give yourself credit for the amazing things you accomplish. You might not think it's much but someone out there probably looks at you and sees an example of how they could move forward in their own lives. Check... and then check again.