When selfishness is required...
My mom always calls me "Mother Teresa" because I have an innate desire to help others. Naturally, I gravitate towards people when they are most in need. I become their burden carrier, taking on their pain and suffering. Praying for them, spending time with them, and seeking ways to comfort them. I have forged most of my adult bonds by allowing myself to become someone's confidant, prayer warrior, and friend at the moments when they feel alone in life. I have a gift of discernment that allows me to seek out these spiritual connections effortlessly. Everyone in my life was not always readily open to our connection. Some people have tried to maintain a barrier but they never last long. Once they understand my sincerity and genuineness, they lay it all on me. In those moments, I carry their world on one shoulder and mine on the other. This requires extraordinary mental health and stability. I never try to complain or stray from this gift because I realize that it's just that, a gift.
I was once told that when I'm needed but not wanted, I'm there, but when I'm wanted but not needed, I disappear. This is true. The amount of selflessness needed to be a burden carrier requires you to put yourself on the back burner. Being on the back burner in your own life can only happen for so long before it becomes damaging. My needs became overlooked. I began to make decisions that were best for other people, not myself. That led to some life changing, bad decisions. The lack of self-love and self-awareness became overwhelmingly damaging. After a few too many bad decisions made in these circumstances, I promised myself that I would not allow any one to become my downfall. No matter how helpful it may be to them, if it's detrimental to me, I have to pull away. At times, I have to lose the selflessness and become selfish. Selfishness is required whenever you start losing yourself in the midst of helping others find their way. Being selfish in certain situations have been beneficial to me. No matter how it looks or the guilt I will sometimes feel, my selfishness at times have led me to become the woman I am today. The woman I love being. I found myself through selfishness and putting myself before the needs of others. And while that might sound horrible, it's ok to be selfish at times. It's needed in order to understand your needs and desires. Self love and personal growth can only be achieved when you focus on yourself, learn who you really are, and the things that make you happy.
When you allow people to constantly lean on you, they become comfortable doing just that. They do not understand that you, sometimes, need someone to lean on too: That sometimes you have too many burdens of your own to even consider carrying someone else's. I'm sure that this is not intentional, it is taught. I have taught people how to use me, when needed. I have made myself readily available to pray with others, be there whenever they need someone, and rarely do I ask for anything in return. But I've grown tired of only be called upon or checked for when someone needs me. So my main focus is learning to balance being selfless with being selfish. Being able to be a blessing while remember my own needs. I have to find ways to be self-perservatory while being helpful.
So to everyone out there who has noticed a change in our interactions, please understand that there is no love lost. I still pray for you and wish you the best. I will continue to encourage and cheer you on, from a distance. At this point in my life, selfishness is required. I will no longer allow myself to become overextended to please anyone. I believe this gift is God given, so I must remember to be obedient instead of sacrificial. I will no longer sacrifice my finances, energy, or joy to ensure someone else's. I've made the conscious decision to make people earn my affection, time, and resources.