I have wondered, perhaps too much, if I am a good person. If I’m a good daughter. A good sister, a good girlfriend, and friend.
Many have told me that I am, but I myself have never felt sure. In the past, I have made decisions that were good for me but were bad for others. But then, I have heeded to other peoples opinions and advice too, which has led me down paths only of anguish, loss, and heartbreak.
So which is true? Which is right?
There comes a point in every child’s life when they find their voice, their true voice that will see them through every trial, every success, every argument, every kind exchange. They find a self that will forever define them. I don’t think I ever experienced that. I have never found my voice, the self that I can portray to everyone.
I have played so many people in my short life. I was the humble and sensible friend everyone went to for advice and a hug. I was the good daughter who did as she told, who looked after her little sister, who did everything I was supposed to. I was the student, who followed the rules and did the work I was set and to the best of my ability. I was the worker, who again followed rules and regulations and who was often talked down to because of my lowly status in the business. So how, despite all this, have I managed to lose friends, and lose family?
I don’t know if it’s right to say, but I honestly feel I have done nothing wrong. I have lived, trying every day to make it better. I earn my own money, I live comfortably, I eat well, I love unconditionally, and I forgive even when I shouldn’t. I went to university and worked hard to graduate with an incredible 2:1. I moved into a wonderful little flat by the sea with my boyfriend. I couldn’t be happier with what I have achieved.
So, why doesn’t this make others happy? Is it the fact that I did this on my own terms? That I did it by my own means? I have never been the sort of person to go running and asking for help, more when I know I can sort it out myself. I have never been that person, but somehow people in my life seem to want me to be – just so they can feel needed. I’m sorry, but I thought the idea of growing up was to be able to stand on your own two feet and to be independent. Am I wrong? I don’t know, but that is not me. And never will be.
I have always longed for change. And no greater change came then when I left home and moved to Canterbury to study. It didn’t take me very long to realise that this is the place where I will live and make it my own. It didn’t take long at all and I was determined to reach that goal no matter what it took. Even if it took working long shifts in retail to do it. I was fully prepared and committed to it. I was ready for it because it was something I desperately wanted. And I did it. Three years, living and working and studying side by side and I did it.
Of course, meeting my boyfriend was a big help as he helped that dream become reality. We moved in together and have started building a good life for ourselves. We both work so, unfortunately, we don’t see each other as much as we want to, but when we are together, there is nothing but love and laughter and childish games. I have never felt so cared for, so wanted and so appreciated in my life. And while it’s not really your business, I feel the need to state, once and for all, that there is no malice, no manipulation, no abuse going on in our relationship, as people in my life believe. The only manipulation and stress in my life has come from you. And you probably didn’t realise you were doing it.
Since being with him, I have finally found a self that I can nourish. A self that reflects who I truly am inside. Someone who is strong, but needs looking after. Someone who is mature enough to handle life’s problems, but is a big kid at heart who knows and loves to laugh. I am someone who loves the little things. A drive with the windows down. The sound of the sea. A clear night sky with millions of stars. A clear mind and a clear conscience telling me I am on the right path. It’s these things that make me, me. No material goods will replace the sense of wonder within. No amount of money will replace the love I have in my heart for those who deserve it.
This self, this girl has laid hidden for so many years but now it’s her time to shine. Regardless of what people think. Regardless of what people expect. And I think it’s only right to cherish and nourish her, as I have done with everything and everyone who has come into my life.
So if you think you know me, the real me, then you are mistaken. I haven’t known me for a long time, but I think it is time to find out what I can do and what I can be.
I hope you’ll join me on this ride.