Sunday, September 16, 2012
It Matters to Me, It Matters, I Matter
The more I tried to fight this thought, "If it matters to you, it matters." the louder it got... Finally, I had to ask myself why I was trying to convince myself that a statement about the importance of what matters to me doesn't matter. Suddenly, I realized what it was.
So often when I feel hurt, sad, disappointed, concerned, or frustrated, I tell myself it doesn't matter. I ask myself who will care in a hundred years. I convince myself that just because it matters to me doesn't make it important. Why the hell not? I would never tell another person his or her concerns, needs, or pain were unimportant even if their significance didn't resonate with me. I just wouldn't do that. Yet, I've somehow, over the years, come to believe that my concerns are less important or are overblown or that I'm just being too sensitive or melodramatic, and therefore my concerns don't matter. Push it down and move on with life... After all, who will care in a hundred years, or even five, or maybe even next week?
I'm fairly certain I also tend to do this with good news. I'm more likely to share good news, but I'll still question whether it matters to anyone besides me. When I share good news, I always feel like maybe my good news will inspire someone else to keep trying even if they don't necessarily care about my good news.
I tap into what matters to me to write words I hope will matter to someone else. I attempt to share my struggles and triumphs with others in an effort to let other people know they matter and that what they are going through matters. Yet, far too often, I downplay what matters to me even to myself even as the words are spilling onto paper in hopes of reaching out to someone else. It's a dichotomy I'm struggling to reconcile within myself.
So the next time I feel the urge to ask myself "Who will care in a hundred years?", I'm going to instead remind myself that "If it matters to me, it matters." because that's honoring myself. It may not matter to me five minutes later, but in the moment it matters to me, there is a reason it matters. When something matters to me, it is up to me to explore why, learn from it, grow from it, and share what I learn with others in the hopes we can all grow together.
Perhaps with time I'll also learn to more easily focus on what really matters to me as I allow myself to remember that mattering to me is enough to make something worth paying attention to...
And, the same goes for you... If it matters to you, it matters. Never let anyone else tell you anything different.
T. L. Cooper grew up on a farm in Tollesboro, Kentucky. She earned a Bachelor of Science from Eastern Kentucky University. Her poems, short stories, articles, and essays have appeared online, in books, and in magazines. Her published work includes a novel, All She Ever Wanted and four books of poetry. When not writing, she enjoys yoga, golf, and traveling. Currently, she resides in Albany, Oregon.