I Always Have Me

by Ashley on October 21, 2012

I was thinking about those rare people who always make you feel like everything is going to be okay. They just have that thing about them that you feel like you can trust. They aren’t going to fall apart or disappear or say the wrong thing.  You just want them around.  But, it’s a little bit scary to be that dependent on another person, and it’s unfair to treat a person as more than a person, because we all need permission to fall apart and disappear and say the wrong thing.

But the inconsistency of the world is too hard to handle sometimes and I still find myself looking for things I can always count on.  This was something I thought a lot about as I prepared to travel alone.  Before I left for Germany, I read an interview with Mindy Kaling where she said that before she died, her mom gave her the advice: “You have to be your own best friend. If you always remember that, you will always have someone there with you.”

It is not the easiest thing to do.  I found that enjoying being alone is not the same as being your own best friend–being a comfort to yourself when things are not going well.  It means liking yourself and trusting yourself on a new level.  None of this to say that you shouldn’t count on other people (other people are the best) or that every new experience means falling apart (I was fine in Germany). Just that you always have yourself and that is something.

{ 6 comments… read them below or add one }

Bridget October 21, 2012 at 9:41 pm

I love this.

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Jeff October 22, 2012 at 1:57 am

What doesn’t kill you makes you stronger. Don’t forget about that person in the mirror, who knows you better than you care to know!
Honest, contemplative and too true it can scare you!
Groetjes.

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GirlFrmMars October 22, 2012 at 12:19 pm

I love this post, Ashley.

So much truth.

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Lauren Michelle October 23, 2012 at 10:32 am

I understand what she means, and I’m actually quite bad at being my own best friend. I often find myself disappointed in who I am. I lack confidence, and don’t always trust myself to make the right decisions. I quail away from anything that challenges me in a real way, because I’m scared to death that I’ll make the wrong move. It’s like my mind has grown comfortable in a little hole and doesn’t want me to venture out and figure out who I really am. It saddens me to think of myself like that, because I do want to be so much more. I think it’s great you went to Germany and were fine by yourself. I actually like going places alone, but sometimes I keep away from certain things that look interesting because I couldn’t imagine not having someone there doing it with me. I’ve realized that I’ve had this co-dependence, not necessarily on any one person, but on the idea of having someone else there. Part of me would like nothing more than to move somewhere big, say, New York City, and push myself to make it somewhere completely different than where I live now on my own. Of course, I can’t afford New York City in reality, but you get my point. After I complete my master’s in English (I’ll hopefully get started in my program next fall), I’d like to move somewhere out of South Carolina to do an MFA in writing. Then maybe go somewhere else and get my Ph.D. I think I would definitely like to go to school in either Boston or NYC, though.

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Krys October 23, 2012 at 9:49 pm

This is something I was just thinking about the other day. I forget sometimes, but when it comes down to it, I think I am starting to catch onto this. I have a lot of people in my life who I can – and do – lean on, but it’s still important to have the knowledge that I can make it on my own and I am finally getting there.

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treavioli November 1, 2012 at 10:16 pm

Gonna live this in Seattle

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