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Wednesday, August 6, 2014

Reflections 9 Months Later

I'm sure my really close friends remember this post from exactly nine months ago: Bad Day. Well, tomorrow marks 9 months since my life has changed and I'm still trying to work through the aftermath. I have a strong feeling that this is why I've felt on edge this week and nightmares have increased in intensity (because this month mirrors the days exactly to November 2013). Ironically, the feelings I felt on this day six months ago are exactly how I feel today. Except tomorrow I won't be going out, I have a job interview for a local job to help me save for Wisconsin as I keep applying there. I'm doing what I need to do despite criticisms. I am not unrealistic, I am not a loser.

Two people close to me said something really powerful to me today. One said, "I don't listen to so-and-so. You shouldn't either. Just do what you need to do." Another said: "You shouldn't listen to people who don't fully have your interest in mind." Ah, man, that was the lesson I learned the hard way: twice, maybe thrice, actually I think it is thrice!! nine months ago. It reminds me of what someone posted on City-Data. I am going to print it out and keep it on me at all times:

Old 06-07-2014, 09:02 AM
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Default I do not accept the care and feeding of your monkey.

Some of you may have heard of this concept, but apparently it's a new one to a lot of people, based on how often I have to explain it, so I thought I'd share it here and get feedback. Some people are delighted when I share this concept with them, and others think it's awful. I worked for years with a woman and we always got along fine, but when I left and they had my little going away party, she told me that she had never forgotten when I told her this and though it really took her aback, she realized immediately what my personal boundaries are and has applied this to her own life and passed it along to her kids as well. This concept is one of the basic, core concepts that I've applied to my own life and wow, it works!

What does "I do not accept the care and feeding of your monkey" mean? It means this - I am not going to allow you to shift a responsibility that is entirely yours on to me.

Let me give some examples:

Say that your co worker says, "Oh my gosh, DON'T LET ME FORGET that I have to call Mr. Smith after lunch." Now - seems innocent, right? But it's not. If you say, "Sure, I'll remind you," then if you forget to remind the co worker, and they forget to call Mr. Smith, then suddenly it's partially your fault - when it was their sole responsibility until you agreed to help them remember to make that important call. 

I Do Not Accept the Care and Feeding Of Your Monkeys. This is an offshoot of the old Polish proverb: "Not my circus, not my monkeys."  I've been learning to say that. Last week I deleted the boy from Ohio that caused some of this heartache from my phone. He was blocked in the blocking app I have, but I hated how his picture looked at me. He's blocked and will still be blocked even though he's not in my contacts. The number remains in the app. Though, I think it was obvious after things happened that he didn't care, so I don't think I have to worry about it (and I think he got the hint when I denied his requests from new instagram accounts and blocked them in the same breath... fingers crossed).

I will be writing a poem in due time, I think, or maybe a story. I think I've grown in the nine months and of course, I'm still learning and improving.


  1. Yes, I remember the post. No, you're not a loser; losers aren't anywhere near as responsible or as determined as you are.

    I like KathrynAragon's bit about the co-worker shifting their responsiblities to others. I hadn't thought about that before.

    1. Yes, I learned that from my therapist also, but it's nice that someone typed that out. It helps and it's a good reminder.

      ::hug:: Thanks Andrew.