From the beginning of my life, I was faced with having to make difficult choices. Do I still want to see my father, if I say yes, will that hurt my mother? Do I turn around or continue watching as I leave? This is life, my life in particular. My parents were divorced at a young age and so many of my choices that required decisions were designed to be heavy and meaningful. A consequence of this, however, has been how I’ve dealt with the same kinds of choices as I’ve gotten older, the only difference is that I’m completely aware of the ramifications and possible outcomes, I’ve also got to now consider myself as well. This is my struggle.
Throughout my life, I’ve always attempted to be objective, to not choose sides because in the end, I loved and cared for all involved. While fairness is not always possible, I have grown up with the belief that it is always achievable. That differences can be gotten over, qualms can be set aside and that selfishness of others will take the wayside to my own desire. It is never about having my cake and eating it too, it was never based on selfish desires or outright malicious intent, it was ALWAYS because I never understood fully WHY I had to choose. In a work situation, should I have to choose between work or a horrible coworker? Personally, should I have to choose between friends and others? This is where the quandary of approach and execution arises, because most of the time I feel it’s a lose/lose situation, with the end result being that I am the only one truly hurting at my core because I was faced with the silly choice in the first place.
What has ultimately occurred with myself in particular, is that I’ve attempted to avoid needing to make those sorts of choices. Voice my concerns about the fairness of making me choose, that I would in fact NEVER make anyone choose because it isn’t right on a very basic level of any meaningful relationship. I am weird though, my past experiences have led me to be open to much more than most would be alright with. It is exactly why I crave and choose to be objective, it is the only way I know to find a balance.
Balance is incredibly important in one’s life, and often an aspect that just about everyone forgets from time to time. I do not think it’s reasonable to be objective ALL the time, as we must be selfish for our own evolution, but being so on a regular basis was meant to help me avoid the death knell of choice. I’ve constantly heard, “Put yourself in my shoes…” and yet it is hardly ever reciprocated. The reason why I am struggling IS because I’m putting myself in your shoes. The pain I feel is not just my own when making these choices, it is the pain of all parties involved. To have to ask to choose, to be asked to choose, and having to bear the weight on not being chosen.
I spend a very large amount of time trying to understand, truly understand, because I do not ever want to be caught needing to make this choice…and yet I’m perpetually asked to do so. Whenever I finally make a choice for myself, it is received with awe and shock, because how can I dare not be the one to sacrifice? How can I dare defy what has been built over the years? How can I, Shawn Lee, be so selfish? Well, let me explain this now. I believe that 1 single moment of happiness is enough fuel to keep me warm during 2 years of sadness, pain, loss and everything else life throws at me. With that knowledge, it would mean that as I bear the weight of others as well as my own, by choice, that every once in a while I need to grab what few opportunities that makes me happy.
I live in constant contentment, but at some point, it is not enough. The cheer, joy, smiles, laughs and silliness that I love to exhibit for those around me, to uplift their spirits and minimize the gravity of life itself, requires fuel. While I do have boundless energy, it is beyond me to ignore those I care about, but I hope they all understand that I also need to care for myself, even if it isn’t a preferred means of accomplishment. I do not use others as a step to get ahead, I do not walk over others because it’s the easiest path, I do not demean or put down for my own benefit, but most of all when I make a choice for myself, I do so because it is what I believe will make me happy, no matter how temporary that happiness may be.
I know that it would be unrealistic to believe that I won’t be asked to choose in the future, I know I will. This is more of a cry for others to be more conscious about what they are asking others, or more to the point, WHY they are asking it. One cannot be a go-getter if they remain in the back seat, on the bench or in the rear of the line. Most of all, if it’s important, then act like it, it’s why I reach for what few opportunities I’m presented with, and give it my all when I get a finger on it. I will not feel regretful for wanting a moment of happiness for myself, even if the source is questionable to others. I am not a drug addict, depressed, an alcoholic or turning to chemicals that alter my lens of reality, I simply found myself. Obligation has cheated me of choice in the past, but I am not whom I once was. I’ve had an awakening and while I wish and desire for those I love to join me on this incredible journey of discovery, I will never feel obligated to choose again. If I am asked to choose, I will choose myself because I can’t live without my Self and I would never ask anyone else to do the same.