Monday, 10 November 2014

Remember Me, The Girl Who Changed Your Life

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This is truth of our pasts: we have all changed each other. We made a subtle mark, we left footprints, and we created memories. You see, I always talk about how everyone else has changed me, or how someone's actions changed the way I think or the way I operate. I always turn them into one of two things: a villain or a hero, and I never think of myself the same way. We're not victims, and we have enough power to make or break another human being, to hurt another heart.

But we all do this. We all remember moments in our lives defined by who orchestrated them, and who cut us open. We never think about what we have done to others, and when we do, we do so by thinking we did it for the best. We justify it. We underestimate our influence, we strip away our value and ignore our power. 

I never really thought about it before. What my behaviour or my words may have done for others, or what it might have done to them. What I mean is, the breakups, nasty fights and battle wounds, they left us all damaged even if it wasn't forever. No one won my wars, and no one claimed a triumphant victory. We all just survived. 

But then we moved on, and we were happy. Life taught us that experience gives us glory and defeat, and we adapt to the complexities of adulthood.

This doesn't just apply to boyfriends, girlfriends, family strife or dismantled friendships. We all influence each other on a daily basis. We don't know it, we don't know we are that important. But people remember what you say, people remember how you act. Even if for a minute, you can change someone's life even if it's just with the things that you say. Even if you just hold a door open for them, or help them pay their bus fare.
sparklers image, fall image, winter image, fireworks image

I've been changed by those who have walked alongside me. Housemates, best friends and boyfriends. I've also been changed by words of people I've never met. Bloggers, reporters and writers. The undiscovered creatives. Your influence is everywhere.

I realised I'm not always the victim, and even when I was I always left my own amount of ruin and rubble. Broken picture frames and unworn jewellery. I left them with shards of regret. Or I left someone with a sour taste in their mouth. The fireworks had turned to dust, and there was smoke in their throat.

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Source: Tumblr
I've been that girl who taught you how to fight. 
That girl who walked out on you.
The girl you loved to hate.
The one who needed the drama to get by.
That particularly difficult friend.
The demanding girlfriend.
The girl without a light.
The girl who changed their minds.
The girl who believed in you.
The one that got away.

That last one, I find particularly problematic. I never called myself that, but someone did. With some people I know the true influence that I had on them, like with Rhys. I know that no matter what, we have changed each other. I know that no matter what happens, that this a forever. We make each other better people, and if life turns out to be cruel to us then that is something that will never be stolen by the fragility of the future. I know that it is a mark of love. But with some people, I never knew that my face followed them around, or that they could be haunted.

At one point, a face from my past turned from a ghost to friend, but there was a conversation that happened. That conversation was a finale, a climax to another "Would they or wouldn't they?" saga. It had been long overdue, and it came easy as time had moved us into a position of comfortable truths. When I heard those words, I laughed. It was a nervous laugh, and I could not take it seriously. It had never occurred to me, and it felt absurd to even think that I had maintained a lingering wondering. 

It felt ridiculous, and sad. He hadn't erased the trace of me, even though he knew he was happy. He was always going to be a great man, and I never thought I was part of that story.

It was closure, and the kind I think you needed. The problem is that people always want the thing they can't have, and when it has somebody else. The solution I gave was honesty, and it was the kind where I told you that I knew you weren't telling me everything all along. I could always call you out, and I think you missed it. We only knew fragments, histories and has-beens. We knew pushing buttons and ambition, hunger and drive. We knew four hours in Starbucks on a cold Sunday afternoon, we knew windy days and learning. We knew goodbyes. This was what you wanted.
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Source: Tumblr

My point is, people will always think of you.

You will think of them.

Some won't remember me fondly, and that's okay. There's bad blood and love lost. There's the sting of careless words and small town gossip. Not everyone will remember me the way I would like, not everybody will remember you accurately. But they'll remember us.

I've been a million different things, and so have you. We left trails and breadcrumbs, tears and regret. We left growth. There will always be one story told that leads back to you. You'll always be someone's anecdote, and you will always have your own share of the light.

This is the saving grace of human beings, and our downfall. We can all do something great with our lives. We could save humans and creatures, if we could only stop destroying each other. Maybe I needed to change someone's life, and maybe it wasn't my own.