Moments of impact. Impressions. Emotions. All of these things define us as human beings. We have fears, wants, and needs. But what happens when an entire human population is wiped out and you are the only one left standing? How do you grow and develop? The point is, other humans shape us into the individuals we are by interacting with us.
Have you ever wondered about how the people around you on an everyday basis develop us into who we are today? If this person never talked to you and said what they said, would you be different?
These are the questions I ask myself on a daily basis. I realize there are so many people I have met in passing that have impacted me in so many ways, that I may not have realized at the time. It’s a little frightening but then again it’s extraordinary, the people we meet.
We cried and our mothers soothed us. A moment of impact. Our parents started it all. Our parents took us under their wing and created morals and values instilled in us. Many of us carry those morals and values with us to this day. But what made us who we are? Everyone. Everything. We soaked it all in. We saw what our eyes and minds allowed us to see. We experienced moments of impact. Walking down the street you are surrounded by individuals that are each unique in their own way.
We study them, without realizing. I’m guilty of people watching, but I do it because I am intrigued by styles, movements and voices. Before I know it, I’m shopping and I see something that I like because it looked good on the girl I passed on the street. That girl impacted me. Yes, it’s slight in its own way, but the smallest things create the big things and the big things create the small things.
For example, God created the Earth. This big thing created all of us, and caused us to make lives, meet people, experience and love for a limited time. We have so many opportunities to create memories and learn our purpose, learn about ourselves and where we are meant to be, and how we are meant to develop.
Impressions. First impressions. Last impressions. Impressions where you haven’t even spoken to the person and you already know who they are… or so you think. I tend to give everyone a chance. Even if the first impression is hard to look past, I try to give a chance.
Don’t be so quick to judge, you may be surprised what you are missing out on. Emotions. I will be the first person to say, that I am emotional. I feel everything. If someone is crying, I can feel his or her pain. My heart is my biggest strength and my biggest weakness. I want to help everyone. I want to save everyone. I want to protect. I want to make everyone happy.
It’s a difficult life trying to do all of those things. I drown in my emotions, I become overwhelmed and I feel alone. I have struggled with my emotions for as long as I can remember, but they weren’t created on their own. I was affected by past relationships, family issues, stress from school, and trying to make everyone happy all the time. Everyone has experienced something, and everyone has developed differently and matured differently because of those experiences with those interactions. Here are the ones that have affected me the most. I’m sure many of you can relate.
My parents are well off. No, we aren’t rich, but we are able to do things that not many families can say they do. We absolutely love traveling together. Growing up wasn’t always that easy though. When I was very young, I remember sitting in my sister’s room listening to the screams and shouts coming from my parent’s bedroom weekly. It continued for years and one day it just stopped. It hasn’t really been the same since then.
They have continued to work on their relationship over the years and luckily, things have gotten much better. There are many things I know I am unaware of, and that also plays its role. I respect it, but it’s been rough over the years, even awkward to come home sometimes. It wasn’t always a healthy relationship, and it took a huge toll on me and how I viewed relationships.
Because of them, I really don’t like fighting. Not that anyone likes fighting, but it scares me. So I always fight with myself and my own interests in efforts to keep the other person happy so I can avoid confrontation. The problem with that is, I get stepped on, over and over. I get taken advantage of. People refer to me as “too nice.” It’s both a blessing and a curse.
On the other side of things, my mom has taught me to never give up by pushing me again and again to achieve my goals, even when I was a pain in the butt with my math homework. I hated school. I never wanted to do my homework but she always pushed me. I ended up with the highest GPA out of my entire family. I graduated college and am pursuing PT school because she never gave up on me.
She taught me to let go and embrace my weaknesses. She taught me how to do things on my own, to be independent. My dad taught me how to play sports, which became a huge part of my life. I played soccer all throughout high school and ended up being a huge part of the team.
He has and will always be my number one fan. He taught me how to sing, and how to write. He taught me how to put my emotions into words. My parents are incredible human beings, and I wouldn’t want anyone else to have raised me, because they did an amazing job with my sister and I. We’re doing all right.
I call her my younger older sister because she acts younger than me, but she’s older. Makes sense right? I’ve looked up to her for as long as I can remember. She’s pursued her dreams from the day she was born, and not many people can say that. I was always jealous of the way academics came so naturally to her.
She barely studied and would walk out of a test with an A, no problem. Me? I had to study for weeks, and would still make a B. But because of her, I pushed myself all through college and I was academically successful. She taught me how to be blunt.
Being honest is the best way to live, and that’s one of the biggest reasons trust is so important to me. Because I know she would never lie to me, so nobody else should either.
The one who damaged you, the one that created trust issues. They messed with you because they knew you liked them. You fell for it because you thought they liked you. Playing games is damaging, and hurtful. People don’t realize that you are affected the rest of your life because of one incident. I don’t trust many people fully. I hide a lot. I don’t open up often. I’m afraid. All because of the one that damaged me before I even knew what love was.
Your first fake love, the one you thought you fell in love with. Your relationship was really great, and lots of fun, and suddenly you love them right? Wrong. You think you do. Until it really happens and you realize you just liked them a lot. They taught you how to be in a relationship for a long time, and they taught you a basis of what you are looking for in a compatible partner.
They gave you some pretty good memories and they helped you get over the one who damaged you. You broke up for a silly reason but you still talk every once in awhile as friends, because you never really loved them, so you can still be friends.
Your first love, the one who made it hard to breathe. The one who made you feel weak. The one who brought emotions out that you did not know were possible. We dated for four and a half years, and I truly thought I was going to marry him. My whole world was wrapped around his fingers, and he knew it. So naturally, he got away with doing some things that didn’t settle well with me. But I was in love. I had a connection to him that was unbreakable.
He never said no to anything, so we spent a lot of time doing things outside instead of just sitting around. When he was gone though, I cried all the time. We were long distance for three of those years, and I can tell you that I never felt more alone in my life when he was gone. We fought often about communication and about visiting with each other. He went to an army school, so his time was limited, but I was never the priority. We spoke for thirty minutes a day, and he often complained that it was a chore to talk to me.
There was a lot of pain built up, because I never understood why someone would want to be apart for as long as we were when we were so perfect when we were together. I still don’t understand. We planned on attending the same school this upcoming fall, or so I thought, but recently found out that he had other plans and he never really planned on going to the same place as me.
I ended the relationship quickly after that. It was a rough breakup. The best thing that came out of that relationship though, was strength. I had to be strong every single day. I had to fight, every single day. I learned that I can handle a lot. I learned who I am, and I learned my worth. I learned what I want out of a relationship, and what I deserve.
Your best friends—you’ve been friends for years. You tell them everything. You actually trust them with your life and they are probably the one person that knows you inside and out. You may have more than one, like I do. I have three, and they are all extremely different.
They have gone through everything with you, from breakups to relationships. You tell them things that they don’t need to know, but you do anyway because it’s something to talk about. You never get bored talking to them, and sometimes you wonder if you are in a relationship with them because you tell them more than you would tell your boyfriend. They helped me through more than I can name, and their impact has helped shape me into the person I am today.
The one that gave you hope again, the one you randomly meet that throws you off your feet. The one that doesn’t exist and the one that you have trouble finding words for. You thought you met the best match out there for you with your first love, but this one makes you question and it terrifies you. They impacted you when you least expected it.
You were at an all-time low, and thought surely you were going to end up alone, but they proved to you that there are others out there for you. Best part is, they don’t even realize what they mean to you and that’s okay. They don’t need to, but you can smile and walk away from them knowing that they gave you a hopeful chance and you can be confident in knowing that you aren’t alone. You don’t know where life will take you with them, whether that’s a consistent lifelong friendship, or maybe something more. The chapter remains open, and sometimes they stay that way.
A moment of impact. Impressions. Emotions. We are defined by the people around us. We are impacted with negative and positive light. We overcome it. We become stronger. We fail. We try again. We examine our surroundings. We soak it all in.
We meet people and they shape us. We see people, and they shape us. We hear people, and they shape us. Our choices are chosen because of experience. Our choices are chosen because of what we hear, see and think. Our choices are chosen because of the people we meet.