Come October, I turn the big 4-0. I find it hard to believe that I’ve lived almost forty years on the planet. With this prospective milestone, one can’t help but deeply pause and reflect. I don’t have a bucket list, and frankly don’t care to. At this point in my life, what I most value is how I spend my time and with whom.
Lately, I’ve had more profound life conversations with one of my brothers. A constant theme in our discussions is using time wisely to spend on things that move our souls. Some of these things have involved ways to be a blessing to others, through acts of service and giving. However, a large part of that discussion has also been learning to be okay with saying no to things, situations, or people that simply don’t move us and/or doesn’t move us to become better human beings.
Last year, I happily walked away from a friendship of almost two years that wasn’t flourishing any further. Instead, the other person behaved aloof, and at times jealous. I found this behavior annoying and confusing. I thrive in collaborative friendships. Jealousy is a surefire way to kill any friendship. The other person’s energy became draining, suffocating even, and though I tried and hoped it would work, I knew deep down that if I continued, I would find myself trying to negatively compete with her and/or find myself licking proverbial wounds. I cut the person off completely…cold turkey. I removed her from my phone’s contact list and every social media platform I’m on. Now you may think, “gosh, that’s harsh” but I guarantee that you get to a point in life when you know that someone’s off putting vibe toward you, and the universe, is not what you want to be in alignment with. Cutting the person off was incredibly freeing to me. My heart felt light, and my mind was clearer. Any feelings of disdain or possible jealousy were suddenly gone. When you experience this type of nirvana, you know you made the right decision. When you reach true grown folk status, life experiences truly take shape as seasons, so when fall’s over and it’s time for spring, you just get ready.
I too have no issue when someone decides their season with me has ended. I had a learning curve of growing pains to go through that were part of my process to realize this. I’m glad I’ve learned not to get bent out of shape about friendship seasons as I used to.
I’ve reached a point in life where I have a healthy sense of who I am in my family and in my personal and professional relationships. I have a small, and very life enriching, all-season group of friends and continued life-giving experiences that are dear to me, and that as simply enough. Anything or anyone extra is just a bonus. When it comes to friendships, people who make time to be in your life will be there, and people who don’t, just won’t. Simple. And that’s okay. For the meantime, enjoy the season, darling.
by Dr. Chisom Unegbu