As I stated in my bio, I was never the most positive person growing up. I was raised by a mother who [still to this day] has never said “I love you” to me, and rarely states that I look nice. I love my mom, but she is emotionally aloof. She was not the mom who bakes cookies for my friends when they come over and hands everyone a Mott’s juice box. She was not the mom that left notes in my lunchbox or gave me a mushy card on my birthday. My birthday card usually doesn’t have a pen mark on it. Just the card’s corny poem in the middle and a check folded inside. There have been more times than I can count that I have had a conversation with others — whether it was my therapist, my aunt, or my friends — telling them that I wish she was different. I wish she was the mom that said I loved you on the phone or was happy to have my friends at the house. She wasn’t. And she never will be.
This is something that I have always had a hard time accepting. She is just different, and I needed to learn that most people just won’t change. This is how she is wired. I thought that after therapy she may change, but she didn’t. I was upset about that for awhile as well, and felt like I have wasted so many years seeking her attention and approval. But now I have finally come to terms that she is just not the same as my friend’s moms or even my aunt. My mom comes off cold, rude, unfriendly, and even selfish at times. Both her and my father are not emotional at all. My dad is a bit more sensitive and nurturing to be honest, but they are still not the lovey dovey parents that my friend’s had. I have been resentful about this for most of my life, but now I am thanking them as I have developed into a strong, independent, blunt, and diligent human. I was never spoiled and learned at an early age that if I wanted something, I needed to create goals to reach to get it. I never got a gift because I asked for it, I got gifts when I achieved the things my parents asked of me like getting straight A’s, scoring goals in soccer, etc. I understood that working hard usually equates to praise or rewards – classic reward/punishment conditioning. Maybe my parents weren’t the ones to buy me whatever I wanted or tell me “I love you” after every phone call, but they taught me the importance of working hard and establishing a thick skin. Thankfully I got over my childhood resent and learned the importance of the latter.
I’ve had an issue recently with a guy I was talking to. Very casual, and not meant to be serious, something that I communicated from the beginning. We got into a few arguments recently about how I find his lifestyle ‘unattractive.’ His lifestyle is hashtag #blessed, from what many would observe. He has a full time maid who does his laundry, cooks, and cleans his room. He goes to a community college currently and takes 15 or less credits. He currently drives a Maserati, and before that was a Mercedes and BMW. He does not work or intern. His life is very different than mine.
After he got offended when I told him I was not ‘fond’ of his lifestyle, I tried to explain to him that there is nothing wrong with how he lives his life, and that I am not trying to change him; it is just not a lifestyle I can relate to. He interpreted my response as being “jealous of him.” Not only were flames sparking from my head out of complete rage and frustration, I realized how different we were raised by our parents. He said that he was blessed with a family that gives him a lot of money, and that he doesn’t need to work, especially at age 20 (not my opinion, I think you should be working even earlier than this). I simply said, “Yes. I did not have to start working at age 20 either. But the difference between me and you is that I CHOSE to.” I wanted to work early. I wanted to start making money and depending less on my parents. Although they never babied me, their emotional distance made me recognize that I’m not going to live under this roof forever, and I need to learn how to take care of myself. If they weren’t going to say I love you to me, I needed to learn how to love myself. I knew that I was not going to get handed anything in life, and I needed to work for what I wanted. I am unfamiliar with his lax lifestyle, and he is unfamiliar with my workaholic tendencies. This is where I thank my parents. This is where I realize that I am going to become a #GIRLBOSS.
I realized that the #easylife is not for me. I don’t want that. I don’t want to not be challenged at work or stop dreaming of climbing the ladder each year in my career. I love that in my new apartment, I can look around my room and say that I worked for and bought each piece of furniture myself, without the help of my parents or friends. As I stated in the prior post about Millennials, many people have the misconception that we are all lazy and entitled brats. Although I have met a decent amount of people who definitely fit that description, everyone around me knows [and I know] that I am for sure the opposite of that. I don’t know how to take naps or not be doing something all the time. My brain rarely shuts off, which is almost a complete disadvantage. It’s hard to sleep when your mind is constantly racing, but the good thing about that is that my dreams never diminish. I’m always thinking about what I want to accomplish next and how I want to build my future. I think my biggest fear in life is settling. I never want to come to a point where I feel like settling for anything, whether that is a job, an apartment, a boyfriend, etc. Settling is for the uninspired, for the i’ll-do-it-tomorrow’s and for the this-is-good-enough’s. One strong piece of advice that I learned is that everyone is replaceable. If you do not want to be the best at what you do, try the hardest you can, or even love as passionately as possible, then go, and someone else will do the job for you. Work hard, stay humble my friends.