I find myself deeply wounded by thoughtlessness. I have learnt to discern when people’s actions & words stem from malice (deliberate intent to harm). But unintentionally caused hurt is painful too.
I’ve reacted with anger & met reactions of shrugging off responsibility. Neither reaction has respect or empathy. Blame games never do. And the hurting continues.
Empathy made me see why the other person was unable to do what I needed them to. But that piece of logic did not cover the gaping wound inside me. Why should I tolerate a world I’m too sensitive for?
Because, came my answer, this is my journey in strength & fearlessness, qualities I’ve long admired. This is what I want to embody & it’s nobody else’s job but mine. I’m learning.
Today’s lesson is on boundaries, when to enforce them? When thoughtlessness tips over from uncomfortable to hurtful, that’s when.
These boundaries must contain empathy, gentleness & respect. Without these, they are not boundaries, they’re vengeance. I have realised I must practise these till I embody them, in order to receive my life experiences with them. I am learning that not everyone is able to, willing to or needs to practise them. Those are their own journeys, they are not mine.
The boundary is to step away from them & also any scripts of what happens when they return. To fantasize about that is to either plot revenge or wish for rescue. Neither takes responsibility for the hurt one feels. Our feelings are our own. To acknowledge, to feel, to manage, to express & to learn from.
Drawing this boundary takes me away from what THEY did & focusses on what I have to do. This boundary is to say, let me pause & study the lesson, let me commit it to my being & let me evolve from this classroom when this learning is one with my being.
My hunger for connection, intimacy, inspiration. My desire to see these met with gentleness, empathy, respect. This is my quest. And along the way are so many lessons, many more teachers. Some gentle, some stern, some kind, some cruel.
When the student is ready, the teacher arrives. Hello hurt, goodbye & thank you.