It's been quite some time now since I've written out a rant, but I feel like this topic has been on my mind as of late and it's about time that I shed light on it. I have this application downloaded on my phone that lets me know who 'unfollows' me on Instagram. Not that I am at all concerned as to whether or not my numbers increase or decrease but the tool has somehow become an invaluable one, meaning it has allowed me to get a pretty good idea of who I should keep in my life or the latter.
About two weeks ago, I saw that an old high school girl friend of five years unfollowed me so naturally, I clicked the button to unfollow her back. Personally for me, this is nothing out of the ordinary. You win some, you lose some. A week later, she went out to lunch with a few of my close guy friends and proceeded to tell them, "OMG. I unfollowed Khanh and then I saw seconds later she was no longer following me back. I HOPE SHE DOESN'T HATE ME."
The hypocrisy in such a statement appalls me. Evidently, she was showing great concern as to whether or not I still like her and continued to justify her action by saying that, "It's cause we've lost touch all of these years anyway so I didn't think Khanh would notice." If I was there and could give her any words of advice, I would tell her that words travel fast so if you're going to speak about someone, speak kindness or it'll come back to bite you. Me being me, I slyly laughed at the whole played out scenario without realizing that this has become an increasing trend with the usage of social media. I guess what I failed to understand was why people think it's okay and/or understandable for them to filter me into a certain category and then go on to feel completely offended and scared as to how I may react. I found the whole thing to be hysterical and quite frankly, I didn't waste too much of my time thinking if she liked me or not. At this point in my life, people's opinions of me just doesn't matter anymore. My guy friends even laughed when they saw my nonchalant facial expression because they know me all too well.
Just last night, someone I never really talked to (a distant relative so to speak) messaged me on Facebook and told me that she had to tell me something that's been "bothering her forever." I asked her to tell me what was on her mind. Immediately, she said, "Promise not to get mad, OKAY?" I ushered her to get straight to the point and then she went on to tell me that a facial feature of mine bothers her. Right after she insulted me, she went on to say, "I'M SORRY. But how did the rest of your photoshoot go?"
Initially, I was taken aback by it. Why? 1) She has a track record of leaving butt-kissing comments on my social media 2) I kept wondering as to why my face has anything to do with hers
And so I responded by saying, "Yea, you know everyone has different style. If I got offended by everyone's comments and what they think I should look like then I'll never be happy."
To which she replied, "So did your shoot go smoothly?" At this point, I didn't bother to answer any more of her starving questions and ended up doing something that was completely out of my nature: I told her what was on my mind.
"...but something I need to tell you and hope you're not bothered by this either. I think you shouldn't be bothered by other people's physical attributes and spend more time working and focusing on yourself and what you can do to be better. Let's just keep spreading love and acceptance."
You might think I'm being too insensitive or what have you, but before you make any judgements, I want you to know (if you didn't already) that I have been a victim of bullying for years. I've heard the worse of the worse growing up, whether it was about my hair or the way that I dress. And for the longest time, I allowed each and every single one of those bullies walk away with their low self-esteem raised just a tad bit. Well, I'm not that girl anymore and I don't believe in silencing myself for the sake of pleasing someone else. I also don't believe in giving someone my consideration or mutuality of respect if none of those things are present to begin with. I have used my voice to advocate a lot of causes that I am passionate about but this one, in particular, feels close to home.
By the end of our brief conversation, I could tell that my relative reacted the same way that my friend did--scared, wondering if I'll ever really talk to her again.
A lesson I've learned throughout so many failed friendships is that you can't please everyone. There's that good old saying that goes, "You can be the ripest, juiciest peach in the world, and there's still going to be somebody who hates peaches.” Instead of dwelling too much on all the negativity and people who were never meant to be in my life, I'm just going to continue to be the juiciest, ripest peach that I can be because that, my friend, is how you live a happy life. Being happy with who you are and everything that comes with it.