i spent a lot of years surrounding myself with people like me. Or who were enough like me that nothing was ever challenged. Don’t do that. It’s dumb. It makes you dumb. It makes you complacent and judgey. I picked my partner based on how different we were. Why’d I think it was okay to pick friends differently?

A lot of it comes from the Desire (yes capital D) to be right. When you have a belief system that’s never challenged you begin to think you can do no wrong. That your path in life is going exactly the way it should. And pretty soon you realize your path is a rut. Or you don’t and you turn into a D-bag.

Derby helped. So many different personalities, one common goal. But for a while I did the same thing I had always done; surround myself with teammates who had the same line of thinking and avoiding those I had pegged as too different. It led to some really interesting relationships. I thought it was okay. Okay to always agree with someone even when I didn’t. We were enough alike that I began to think their ideas were mine. See? Dumb.

When things changed and I started disagreeing more and more because I was so fucking exhausted walking on eggshells all the time,the friendships inevitably ended. I feel responsible for my part. For not trying to explain. I could have done more to salvage. To be fair, neither of us handled it well. But I can only take responsibility for my share of the blame. The bitterness I now feel in her presence, I can’t take credit for.  I don’t think I did that.  I hope I didn’t do that.  I don’t think I did.

I struggled all winter. New friendships cropped up. And unlike before, these people weren’t like me (see previous posts). One is sane where I’m a bit not. She makes it okay to laugh at mistakes and see the silly in even the most serious of situations. She routinely calls me on my shit. I need my shit called out regularly. And anyone that can break into song in teh middle of the most inappropriate of places is OKAY in my book and someone worth spending more time with.

One of them is whip smart. Like intimidatingly so. But never once have I felt stupid around her. It’s not her roll. Instead she challenges me to think about things I’d never really thought about.  I don’t ever feel like I’ve asked a stupid question and I don’t ever feel like I’m not sure where I stand (I mean, to be fair I tend to go through life waiting for the big shoe drop, but I’m learning that with her yes means yes etc etc). My brain is growing new bits and pieces hanging out with her and her hubs and sometimes it hurts. To realize you aren’t sure about things and that someone else might actually be closer to right than you or that just because one of you may be right doesn’t make the other wrong is fucking hard to wrap around.  And years of doing it a certain way just cuz suddenly seems like a really poor way to live.

I guess my point is it’s easy to surround ourselves with people just like us. But it’s also easy to do a lot of things that aren’t exactly healthy. It was easy to be In a relationship with a friend who told me what I should think or that I was right all the time. Friendships that challenge us, those that can say “hey, here’s another way of slicing that pie”, those are the ones that’ll keep us alive longer and happier and healthier. So maybe I’m processing things differently, more slowly. Random outbursts are happening. I’m playing with new tools. But it’s good. It’s right and it’s healthy. It lacks the sting of bitterness.  It’s missing the familiar feeling of douchebaggery.  it has a level of Irony that The Man would get, seeing as how for years I lectured him on “see it different, it might work out.” and now I find that I had definitely fallen into a “my way or the highway” sorta of living.  Anyway.  Yea.  Happy Daily.

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