Bitter.

[bitterness & happy]

It’s been a minute so a quick reminder about my intention behind this latest set of posts (latest as in “I’ve actually only posted one in the set due to busy schedule, overwork, stress, and general overwhelm” latest). So yes, this latest set is meant to reflect on (negative?) traits imposed upon me by others (or myself) in hopes of uncovering a positive perspective for their presence (like being fragile, which you can read about here). I’m working on other traits at the moment (like being Selfish and Awkward and Quiet and Stubborn; all good stuff, promise), but this one has been pressing at me wherever I go…which usually indicates that writing is needed. …so, you guessed it: we’re going to explore a bit.

Bitter.
yup, me. I can taste it as I say write it, think it. it’s…unpleasant. I want it to go away. This trait is self-imposed, mostly given that I kept feeling biting anger and sour thoughts creeping up more and more over the course of this past year, partly given that I exposed my past and reflected on my present more than I had before. My plan is to write through why this is and probably possibly hopefully come to a better place once I’m through. …that’s the intent at least. Let’s see what happens, shall we? si? alright, let’s go.

[as always, I ask that if you feel the need to judge, judge me, not the people who are part of my truth. My experience is one-sided. I can’t speak to their thoughts or intentions…be kind, people-friends (although, I know you will be)].

So yes, I’m bitter.

I’m bitter because I wasn’t brought up surrounded by encouragement or messages to follow my dreams.
…because I think, what might have I accomplished had I been fully partially simply supported in the things I did? Academics. Singing. Dancing. Writing. Anything. All dismissed and, at times, even criticized. No wonder my self-esteem is was shit.

I’m bitter because lack of support remains.
…because people keep shutting down the things I dabble in instead of encouraging me to pursue them. Even if I am doing a million things, isn’t that my prerogative? Instead of trying to push me down and assume that I’ll fall because I do too much, can’t you just let me and catch me when if it happens? too much to ask?

I’m bitter because my initial idea of “communication,” formed early on, entailed either that passive-aggressive silence that can be felt in the air or arguments at full-throttle, filled with insults, anger, and hate. 0 to 100. nothing in between.
…because I think, how many times have I remained silent for fear that I (as experience has shown) would open my mouth, ready to produce the confident well-articulated argument I thought up in my head, only to be let down by the emotional, anger-filled words that left my tongue between breaths and tears and overwhelm?

I’m bitter because I can’t say “I love you” as much as I feel it, probably given that it was usually never returned; instead, it was dismissed or, worse, questioned.
…because I think, no wonder I find it hard to say it in intimate relationships, even when I feel it (and God knows I feel it all the time).

…there’s too much blame on circumstance going on here and not enough personal responsibility. I’m not shutting down my experience or invalidating my feeling of bitterness but I do feel a shift is in order…follow me on this, I think it’s going to lead somewhere good.

I’m better because, while I may not find it in the hoped-for places, I am supported and encouraged beyond expected or deserved, by others and myself (which is kind of a pretty awesome feeling).
…because I have a community of people that tell me they’re proud, of faith-filled women that will always be there, of colleagues that believe in my professional self, of best friends that support me just because, of family that love me as best they know how.

I’m better because I have learned to speak my truth more and more with each passing day.
…because, while I may not always articulate in the “best” way, I am sharing my voice more than I ever believed possible, written and aloud. I have even found a few safe places to have disagreements without becoming overwhelmed by emotion.

I’m better because I love and I am loved.
…this one doesn’t need further reflection because, simply, I love. Reciprocation is no longer needed for me to share it. It feels good to love without expectation.

…yeah, I think the latter reflections are more useful.
While bitterness may have served it’s initial purpose (i.e. being a catalyst for motivation, for striving, for not giving up), I think I’m done with it now. Like I said, I don’t like the feeling and it’s detracting from my happy. So, instead of being bitter, I’ll be better. While I believe circumstance and history definitely influence who we are up to this current point, I am an advocate of creating and recreating ourselves as much as needed. The past may shape our present but it doesn’t have to dictate our future. No more excuse, Clouds. and no more bitterness.

-Kurt Vonnegut
-Kurt Vonnegut
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