We Don’t Have It
My kindness has always got me in trouble.
Honestly, I am too kind to people because I really want to prove I am kind.
My reputation growing up as an angry, abrasive, brash young woman has proceeded me.
When most people think of me or see me, “kind” is not the first word that comes to their minds.
I might be assuming a lot, but given my history, I feel confident that people would not describe me as kind.
And I get it. I was rough.
In reality, people are not willing to change their opinions of someone once they’ve experienced them in any way.
People who knew me when I was 15, 18, 25, 30, or hell, even last year, think I am the same person I was then.
I can’t get mad at them because I am guilty of doing the same.
It’s natural to assume that for everyone.
There have been instances where I’ve been proven wrong, and they’re different than who they used to be.
Most times, people are often exactly who they have always been, too.
It’s not just people who have known me for most of my life that assume the worst about me.
Based on how I LOOK, I’ve had coworkers tell me that I am intimidating, cold, and come off as angry and mean.
So I’ve experienced both —
People who THINK they know who I am.
And people who ASSUME they know who I am.
But, to prove everyone wrong, I bend over backward to show them that I am, in fact, a very kind, loyal person.
The problem with that is, once I’ve done this, those same people take advantage of my kindness.
They railroad me, take advantage of me, and beat me until they break my spirit.
Because once people start accepting and liking me, I have conditioned myself to believe that their treatment of me is their way of being my friend.
So, I won’t complain or say a word — I take it because I believe it’s the only way I can get them to like me.
This is how I have approached friendships and relationships…
Only to be left feeling empty and worthless.
I can share hundreds of stories.
Take something that happened at my job recently.
I was given a different role at my job a few months ago. So, I’ve been transitioning between learning a new job and training a coworker to do what I used to do.
A couple of weeks ago, this coworker was given a task that required correcting something previously that I was in charge of.
I realized that many of those corrections were due to my failure (and by failure, I mean, I wasn’t told I was supposed to do it), so I offered to help her — because there was quite a bit to do.
So I did.
I didn’t just do a few of the things on the list.
I did many of these things.
Most of the things.
90% of the things.
I still had other things I needed to work on, but I still took the time to do this to help her.
But, when I could no longer work on the task, I emailed said coworker and listed all the things I could not address (about 7–8 out of 30+).
I expected a reply like, “Thanks so much! You did more than you needed to!” or something to that effect.
Maybe cause that’s how I would have replied if I were in her shoes?
All I got was “Thanks.”
That should have been the red flag that this woman was on some BS.
Fast forward to this past week, when said coworker emailed the team to let them know that all the corrections and changes were made.
One of the “team leads” replied, telling her she did an amazing, fantastic job.
My coworker replied and thanked the team lead “for all their help and support” during this undertaking.
Ya just gonna forget who did MOST OF THAT.
You ain’t gonna acknowledge that I helped you — EVEN A LITTLE BIT?!
UH. NOT TODAY, SATAN.
Or as Candiace from The Real Housewives of Potomac says:
WE DON’T HAVE IT.
I didn’t retaliate or reply.
I did make a huge mental note NEVER to offer assistance or engage with this woman as long as I am at this job or ever again.
Cause WE DON’T HAVE IT.
She’s a small example of how I have repeatedly learned this lesson.
And not just with coworkers but with all the people, all the days, and ways.
The lesson here is that I no longer need to prove my kindness to anyone.
I no longer need to go out of my way to be helpful or “be there” for people who have not reciprocated the same.
Coworkers. Friends. Family. Nobody.
I am a kind person.
That is a fact.
I don’t need to prove a fact.
I don’t need people to attest to it.
It’s simply a fact.
If you haven’t experienced it, that’s YOUR FAULT.
I will always help someone who needs it and will always be there for people who need me.
But if bending over backward to do so— and it’s never reciprocated — then that’s a problem.
Not with you, but with me.
I am the one who should know better.
I will stop thinking I need to EARN people’s friendship, trust, and love by doing more than they deserve.
It’s about damn time that they prove their worth to ME.
Why have I wasted so much time being desperate?
Why have I allowed myself to be railroaded or dismissed relentlessly by people who DO NOT MATTER?!
Yeah, no — enough of that.
I am a unique, valuable, incredible human being.
Y’all should be lucky to know me.
Consider it a blessing to call me a friend.
Yeah, you read that right.
I am COCKY AF now.
I don’t care if I don’t have the money, the looks, or only ONE FRIEND in my life.
I know what I know.
And if you disagree — tell it to Oprah cause WE DON’T HAVE IT.