In my past there was a girl who I was outright fascinated with, who was on some levels my foe. I suppose I originally thought her to be out of her wits, some sort of religious self-righteous person, and her life’s story was downright baffling to me. I didn’t understand why she did anything she did, how she really felt, or who she was as a person behind whatever mask she held me back with. The most interesting thing to me was that I thought she hated me, even though she had no idea who I was, nor did she ever make any attempt to know me.
This bizarre hatred at first made me feel sick. I couldn’t stand the thought that there was some person out there who didn’t know me from Steve, who thought ill of me. I never heard the words from her of course, so I have no idea of her true regard for me, but I just couldn’t handle her low-opinion of me.
The story is of course, not mine to tell, nor could I attempt to, as I never went through the trauma, and how much really can we understand someone else? After sickness wore off and she left my city, curiosity swept in to replace it. I wanted so badly to peek into her life away from us and ours, I did the general Facebook stalking for a bit, but even today I sometimes wonder about her life.
This girl took a scratch to break a bone, and it seemed like I was the thing standing behind everyone she lashed out at. For so long I blamed myself for the pain I saw people close to me go through, only now can my humbled self admit that I was definitely low on her list of things to worry about. I still cannot say that I understand, or that I can even sympathize with her situation, but what I can do is recognize where my actions and not my person hurt her, wittingly or not.
Though I cannot apologize to her, and frankly that would be weird, invasive, unwelcome etc. I can admit my wrongdoing and be done with it. I can lay the topic to rest by admitting my wrongs. So here is the (possibly confusing because I cannot vomit the entirety of the situation brazenly onto a public forum) list of things I feel hurt another person:
- I selfishly took away time and attention of literally the only person who could share the burden of the situation with her
- I viewed her as a static character instead of a person with human feelings
- I judged her, thought ill of her, and occasionally bad-mouthed her
- I infiltrated her friend group and liked all of the attention I got, gorging myself on it and continually seeking out more for myself
- I asked things of her that I now realize to have been inappropriate
- I misunderstood her
- I poked my nose into her life
- I accused her of being high and mighty when I myself was the one acting without humility
- I felt negative towards the idea of her in general
- I unwittingly harassed her safe spaces when hanging out with her roommate
Of course at the time none of my behavior was wrong to me, and I do feel that my position in general did garner initial feelings of ill will from her that were unwarranted, but hindsight is 20/20. The bizarre life experience I was able to glean from the interaction is not much, but I did learn to live my life differently. I came to understand that we are all people, barely any different from the next.
Oddly, it also made me change my definitions of love. I’m not saying I was really into the whole soul-mate thing in the first place, but the revelation that people are so similar instilled a strong belief in me. There are many person v person combinations available to us throughout our lives, and really, it comes down to luck and timing, to fall in love is to be at the right place at the right time. The amount of love you have to give is boundless and can fill the hearts of so many people. To me, it is a comfort to ponder the idea that every person the world over is a possible vessel for my whole heart.