n. :the quality or state of being reciprocal : mutual dependence, action, or influence.
The word isn’t exactly what I’m referring to but it is the closest I can articulate. Go with it.
Several events as of late have given me pause to think about the current path I’m on in my life. The on again off again scenario with TFA is a big one. Several other past and present events have come into play as well. I’m humbled that at my age I can still learn things about myself.1
I tend to be someone who would give you the shirt off his back if you needed it. I invest a great deal of myself in people I care about. Oddly, I’m discovering I’m not always getting the same investment in return. The latter I’m sure has a lot to do with a low self-worth as a child. Anyway, it wasn’t until I was knee deep in a philosophical conversation with a newish friend recently that it hit me. I have a horrible habit of investing myself in someone, friend or otherwise, without expecting or even demanding the same in return. I’m referring to the like energies of time, compassion, concern, advice, and the level of involvement.
I’ve always felt it is important to be compassionate, kind, genuine, etc. I’m discovering it is also just as important to require the type of investment from others I invest in them. I’ll admit this will be hard for me. It is my nature to give of myself.
TFA is a good example as I’ve blogged about him often. One of the biggest problems in the end of our roller coaster ride of a relationship was I felt neglected. He got unlimited and unconditional support from me and sopped it up like a sponge. However, I got very little. It wasn’t intentional but it isn’t about intent. His problems were so great they eclipsed my needs. The real problem was I didn’t see it until the end.2
I’m not planning to stop being the person I am. I just need to remember that I need the type of emotional investment I often give others returned in kind. Oh sure, it sounds easy. I’m also looking at some of the wasteful energies I give off and re-examining my priorities. I’ll save you this boredom for another post.