This is one of my favorite memes:
But the truth is…not caring what people think of you is a two-edged sword.
Yes, as the meme says, there is an awesome level of freedom. When you are so true to yourself that you just don’t give a f^*k what anyone thinks, then you stop wasting your time worrying about stupid sh^t like:
- the clothes you wear
- the car you drive
- the house you live in
- the books you read (or write)
- being seen at the RIGHT places with the right people
- behaving ‘appropriately’
- your job title and income.
You truly are free to do, say, and be with the people that make you happy. H$ll, you finally realize the importance of that word…
And that is an amazing, wonderful feeling.
There is also a responsibility with that!
Yes, few people can handle the truth of that. Most are highly uncomfortable around me. Another BUT coming here, folks…
BUT with some of them it is not just discomfort…it is hurt/pain.
Sometimes my awesome level of freedom causes other people genuine emotional pain. Perhaps they are depressed…or maybe they have just discovered their child’s wonderfully perfect #AutisticSuperPowers…or maybe they are from another time/culture/religion. And I am just too strong a medicine for them.
What do I do?
Do I remain true to me and screw you if you can’t handle it? Do I compromise that freedom? Would I even be free anymore if I did?
The truth is…for some few special people I tone it down. I do not hide it. I never change who I am. Or what I believe.
But sometimes…I watch my language…I dress up just a tiny bit…I even on occasion wear some make-up.
I am empathic. That means that I just know what other people are feeling. No, I am not psychic. I have no idea what they are thinking. But I can ‘feel’ their emotions. Read their body language. Just know.
When I was younger, I misunderstood that. I thought it was all about me. What did I do wrong? Why don’t they like me? What can I do to make them like me? As you can imagine, school, especially high school, was living hell for me. Church too. Even as late as my 30s, I was still striving to be a ‘people pleaser.’
Oddly enough, I think it was my miscarriage, depression, and anxiety that finally broke those chains on me. When you have walked through the valley of the shadow of death where you fearing EVERYTHING, then the stupid sh^t just don’t bother you anymore.
Mothering the most perfect #HappilyAutistic human ever has helped too. It turned me into a warrior. A shield maiden. A Mama Bear. No one messes with my cub.
Because of those empathic senses, I know how the people around me feel though. Most people looking at me would not think I did. They may think I just don’t give a f^*k who I offend. To a degree that is true.
Most of the time…I see it as my sworn duty to make people uncomfortable with that dangerously awesome level of freedom. How else are they to ever realize they could have it too if they have never seen anyone who does before?
So I just keep shining my little weirdness light and attracting those who need/want its warmth and light. And equally repelling those who don’t.
Not because they are bad people. Not because I don’t like them. Not because I think I am better than them (though I think this is how they feel often).
But because…they are not my TRIBE. We are not going the same direction in this life. Because I have nothing to teach or share with them. And they have nothing that I want to learn.
Then occasionally, there is THAT person. The one for whom I do feel the need to tone it done…not to change, not to compromise the message. Just more like sweetening that medicine with a bit of honey. I actually make a real effort to reach and deepen that bond.
But I will not and do not lose me to make anyone feel better. Not ever!