Your new life is going to cost you your old one. It’s going to cost you your comfort zone and your sense of direction. It’s going to cost you relationships and friends. It’s going to cost you being liked, and understood. But it doesn’t matter. Because the people who are meant for you are going to meet you on the other side. and you’re going to build a new comfort zone around the things that actually move you forward. And instead of being liked, you’re going to be loved. Instead of understood, you’re going to be seen. All you’re going to lose is what was built for a person you no longer are. Let it go…
This weeks quote wound up being a tad bit longer than the usual ones. It’s a quote that was sent to me by a friend earlier this week. One that she says has played an influential part of her life recently, and I can understand why. It coupled with a certain Doctor Who regeneration that someone else sent me on the same day helped me deal with some feelings of loss and regret I had earlier this week. Both helped me realize that I haven’t been true to the journey I’ve undertaken so far by accepting this new job. The journey was supposed to be about me making a change in my life, one that would lead me to a better state of being. In reality however, I’ve fought that change tooth and nail since I’ve begun this journey. I’ve fought to hold on to the old ways, the things I believed defined me, the people that I believed needed to be a part of my life. So, on that Monday I decided it was time to make a change, I let you go. I let the old me fade, I let bygons be bygons. I say goodbye one last time. It’s time to create a new me, one that is not dependent upon the friends that he used to have, but one that is dependent only on himself, and one that can enjoy the new friendships and opportunities that life has presented him with.
Well as I said in my last posting this week’s will be of a more substantial nature. I do deliver on my promises when I can. Even still, the post will likely be shorter than “Fleeting Friendships“. Unfortunately, with that post I set the bar unintentionally high and will probably have difficulty keeping up with that moving forward (whoops). This weeks posting will again be about friendships but from a much different standpoint.
You wouldn’t think it, but it does certainly still feel like a very small world despite being in a city of eight million people. As I stated in my initial post a few weeks back; Once I started opening my eyes I was surprised at just how many people I unintentionally ran across in my travels. What surprised me further was the number of people whom have reached out to me wishing to rekindle friendships since I took on the job in Manhattan. Considering, the void i’ve been feeling lately, I can’t say that i’m complaining about that either.
Friends and Acquaintances from all walks of my life began to emerge from the woodwork. People that i’d known all this time lived in the city, people that it had been surprisingly difficult to see prior to this job; despite them only being a few hours away by train. Friends from High School, Friends from College, Friends from my time working at the college, all began to reach out. Given that it’s only been a few weeks, obviously I haven’t even begun to see them all yet. But, upon my taking up permanent residence in the city it will likely become much easier to revitalize those friendships.
Some of the people reaching out surprised me, and others not so much. Some of the friendships felt a little odd at first, others felt like nothing had changed at all. One friendship in particular that i’m particularly glad has been revitalized as of all of this, was a friendship with someone I knew well in high school. She’s been a confidante, and a wonderful influence these past few weeks. A few weeks in which I’ve dealt with sweeping changes to my entire life, career wise, social life wise, that I haven’t been able to parse through on my own. She and I have had the opportunity to hang out a couple of times since I started my employment in the city, and I am thankful that after all of these years, she is still as steadfast of a friend as she was in high school.
Another pair of friends I’ve been lucky to have these past few weeks aren’t really a re-connection, or a revitalization, but i’d be remiss to not talk about them. When I took on my new job, I still had no place to live, and while I could have commuted from my parents house, I was looking at about five hours out of my day. Luckily, my two friends, now temporary roommates offered up a room in their own home for me to stay in. Cleaning it out, giving me all the space I needed, they’ve made me feel welcome in their home, and even helped me rekindle some of my older hobbies that I hadn’t touched in a while. I can’t thank them enough for the kindness, and the accommodation that they’ve presented me with by welcoming me into their home; for that I will be eternally grateful.
Considering all of the above, these past few weeks have shown me that exciting things lie ahead of me. That I will have friends to support me through the changes, and journey ahead of me working, and eventually living in the City that Never Sleeps. It has shown me that when you close a door, a new path is placed ahead of you, one with infinite and endless possibilities. I’ve just begun a wonderful waltz, a game of chess, with a fresh board and pieces yet to be moved. To quote a line from one of my favorite TV series “Person of Interest” it an episode called “If-Then-Else” in it programmer Harold Finch is teaching “The Machine” (an A.I.) he designed how to play chess. In the process he gives the following speech…
Each possible move represents a different game, a different universe in which you make a better move. By the second move there are seventy-two thousand and eighty four possible games, by the third, nine million, and by the fourth, three hundred and eighteen billion. There are more possible games of chess than there are atoms in the universe, no one could possibly predict them all, even you. Which means that, that first move can be terrifying… It’s the furthest point from the end of the game, there’s a virtually infinite sea of possibilities between you and the other side. But it also means that if you make a mistake, there’s a nearly infinite amount of ways to fix it. So you should simply relax, and play…
Harold Finch, If-Then-Else “Person of Interest” S4E11
While life should never be considered a game as it is finite, the quote still stands on its legs. I’ve made the first move by taking this job in Manhattan, and from this point I just need to continue to make moves. Its okay if I make a mistake, as each one will present me with a new path, and new choices to make. Choices in which I can attempt to fix that mistake, and continue to move forward. Step by step, day by day…
As I had alluded to in last weeks social media posting, I will be taking a break from the typical look at my new life in Manhattan to talk about another topic that has been on the forefront of my mind lately. It’s one I feel that many of us will be able to relate to on some level, and it will be a deeply personal topic for me to talk about. This week we are talking about maintaining friendships as an adult, how different personalities might handle those friendships (specifically my own), and the truth about your feelings when you, or a friend leaves you behind.
When we are young, friendships come much more readily. Often times just proximity to people lead you to become friends with them. Sometimes those friends become permanent fixtures in your life, much like some of my friends from elementary school that I still talk to. Others, may have been fleeting, in your life at one part, and out at another. Friendships, as an adult have an an unfortunate tendency towards the latter of the two. What’s worse, in my experiences so far, it’s much harder to make those friendships as an adult. Confidence, Anxiety, Common Interests, all play a much more integral role in the process as an adult, much more than our childhood counterparts. Friendships as an adult also have a tendency to be harder to maintain, busy lives, other friendships, politics, all have an impact on the companions we keep.
To go even further in depth, one can even look at the personality types each individual might have. Certain personality types, have a tendency to get along best with certain other personality types. I’m only going to get into the basics of my particular personality type today, but if you are interested in learning more there will be a link at the end of today’s post that will bring you to a test you can take. I’ve taken the test several times over the years, and it’s fascinating to watch how the results of that test changed over time. When I first took the exam, I came back classified as a “Defender” or ISFJ-T, I used to be extremely introverted, to the point that I fell into this defender classification. As time went on however, over the course of several years, and teaching classes to students where I worked, I became more outgoing. The last time I took the exam I was reclassified as “The Protagonist”, ENFJ-T, and no it doesn’t mean that i’m self centered. The protagonist is defined as follows
Protagonists are natural-born leaders, full of passion and charisma. Forming around two percent of the population, they are oftentimes our politicians, our coaches and our teachers, reaching out and inspiring others to achieve and to do good in the world. With a natural confidence that begets influence, Protagonists take a great deal of pride and joy in guiding others to work together to improve themselves and their community.
Now that you know a bit about the basics, lets focus on the protagonist and it’s friendships…
Protagonists are active friends, and do nothing half assed. We genuinely take interest in getting to know people. Protagonists want to be the best version of a friend they possibly can. Protagonists want to see their friends succeed, and willing give their own time to help see those friends succeed. However, as a protagonist this means we have difficult dealing with personality types who are more interested in the moment, then the future, or those whom are firmly assertive, those whom are content with who they are and lack any kind of desire for self-improvement. Protagonists as a result can be EXTREMELY critical, and it can cause them to push people away. Looking at even just the basics, I can easily see all of these traits in myself the good and the bad. Personalities are a fascinating thing, and I do generally have difficulty navigating friendships with those whom live in the moment. Having to recuse myself often, from saying more critical things, that might cause those people to drift further away.
But, sometimes, despite our best intentions that drift is inevitable. Much as the snap was in Avengers: Infinity War (Don’t you be screaming spoilers, it’s been well over a year now). Sometimes, no matter how hard we try, how much we give our friends, our all; It just isn’t enough. Sometimes, those friends are just realizing that you are too different; perhaps those friends are growing in a direction, where you are no longer the best thing for them, or maybe just maybe you are the one drifting. Regardless of reason, there’s one thing I can say with certainty, it’s going to hurt like hell. But I’m realizing that’s okay, pain is part of the process of living; without sorrow, we cannot know joy, without anger, we cannot know patience, without mistakes, we cannot learn. One thing I really want to drive home though, is no matter how much you hurt, no matter how much you are going to want to blame yourself, to think that maybe there was something you could have done. The honest truth is, there wasn’t, this is all just part of the process of life, you weren’t part of the problem, and even if you were; the foundation to weather it just wasn’t there then. Sometimes, friendships are made to last forever, to weather the darkest of storms like the lighthouses of old. Other times, they are fleeting like the cool winds off the ocean at dusk. Whatever the case, you must never forget that you are good enough, and that sometimes, things are just as fleeting as the wind.
That’s it for this week, next week we return to normally scheduled programming.
Until next time…
As I stated earlier I was going to post a link to a personality test, if you are interested in learning more please check it out.