When I was in university, I made a mistake.
I made a mistake on who I chose to be in my life. You see, a man showed me attention, told me I was beautiful and I thought that was enough to warrant having him in my life. And as a result, I carried a hurt for longer than I should have. This man liked to throw things at me. I was 20 and in, what I believed, was love. So I made excuses. Two times too many until I couldn’t hide the effect. (I’m not taking blame for him being an abuser here.)
After that, even with rose coloured glasses on matters love, I carried a weight I never dealt with for years. An argument was met with fear as I thought someone would hit me.
What do we do with mistakes? How do we handle things that happen to us? Especially when we are young and still finding our way? (although tbh I’m still finding my way)
You know, I completely believe the “hindsight is 20/20” phrase because wow. I should have done better – although on certain days I believe I didn’t know better. Anyway, this was the early 2000s and I didn’t have the information I have today.
For sure I needed to speak to someone about all this – I only started speaking about it openly in the late 2000s mostly because I could see how it was affecting me.
One of the things I beat myself about for years is that I believe I should have known better but on rethinking that whole period, how could I have?
I don’t have answers but I feel like mistakes, pain, hurt etc, things that negatively affect us, disproportionately play a part on who we become. They sometimes become a defining character of who we are. I believe a large chunk is due to how we decide to deal with it.
A person is a sum part of experiences and sometimes the negative experiences seem to matter more. Why is it so? When people say “You aren’t what happened to you” it’s mostly said about things that happen negatively. And there is a tendency for that focus isn’t it?
One thought on “On Youth and Mistakes”
I think about this alot re: my relationships. I have come to the conclusion that even if I knew better, which is debatable, I don’t think I would have done better. The person I was then was not one who would have chosen herself, even armed with all the information. I have accepted that that’s fine. Moving on to better and better.
My therapist says I have experience now. It was like an internship :D. I have experience on how not to be treated, on how to ask for what I need, on how to be the best version of me. And maybe, that’s invaluable.