Letting people show up in your life the way they are meant to with an open heart allows for some of the best surprises that you couldn’t even imagine. When I used to meet people (about four years ago), first impressions were important to me since I haven’t been the kind of person in the past to have a lot of acquaintances. Deep, meaningful connections with a medium to smaller group of friends was what made me more comfortable at the time. Therefore, I was used to making judgements about whether this person I just would be someone I wound up being really close to (now it is clear to me this makes no sense). However, how much can you really know about your potential relationship and journey with someone by just meeting them once?
There was one time I met a woman and she was extroverted, had a huge presence, bubbly and I was the complete opposite. I was very introverted and much more quiet at the time. June* was perfectly nice I just never saw us being close because on the outside our personalities didn’t mesh very well. In the past I would naturally gravitate towards people who were introverted so that they would understand when I would need time alone to recharge without taking it personally. However, there was a part of me (that I of course ignored because at the time I was not in tune with my inner voice) that wanted to get to know her. But I never did.
So in the first three years I knew June, we were never close. We were in the same larger group of friends and crossed paths a lot but I didn’t know her very well. I never made the effort to get to know her better because in my mind she seemed to be someone I already knew I wouldn’t vibe as well with.
Today this woman is one of my closest friends. June is one of the funniest, loving, most genuine, all around amazing people I know. What is so incredible is that we have only really been close for about five months. So what changed?
In my last year of college I was sexually assaulted and it happened with someone who was in one of my major groups of friends. I had people I could talk about it with but it was weird for me to continue with that group of friends like nothing had happened and no one knew. But I needed to talk about it with someone who knew him and a bit more about the situation so I could process it. I was sitting in my bedroom where it happened thinking, “who could I tell (in this group) that would understand me in one of the most confusing times in my life” and instantly I just received two names, one of them was June.
It didn’t make any sense. I hadn’t told her anything like this before. There seemed to be no logical reason why June would be perfect or how it would work. This was the same feeling when I met her years ago. I wasn’t going to ignore it now. I instantly texted her everything that happened and as you may be able to guess she was so understanding, supportive and loving. In a time when I felt like I was going invisibly crazy June made me feel seen and loved. I cannot ever thank her enough for it.
This is so significant to me because this also happened with May* (just realized they are both named after months but that was not on purpose). May was someone I met about three years ago and for the first two of them we weren’t super close or anything. She was someone that I didn’t instantly click with, was someone I wanted to get to know, but in my head it seemed like our personalities didn’t “click”. Like June, I wanted to get to know May but on the outside it didn’t seem like it would happen. Long story short, May was the other person I told. I love May so much. She is one of the strongest, most wonderful, loving, beautiful people I know and I am incredibly lucky to have her as a friend. I found it crazy that the two people I thought on the surface wouldn’t be such a huge part of my life are now today. With both of them my inner voice told me to get to know them, but at the time I ignored it.
I ignored my inner voice because I just couldn’t see how it would work. We aren’t always, or maybe ever, meant to see how every little thing is going to work in our lives. I did have a feeling with both of them that I wanted to get to know them and I didn’t follow through for at least two years with the both of them. Now May and June are two of my closest friends out of school. I care about them so deeply. It would have been wonderful to have gotten to spend more time with them if I just trusted my gut. However, I am a big believer that things work out exactly the way they are meant to.
If I had just let go of what my preconceived notions of what friendships were, what kinds of friends I wanted, what their personalities had to be etc. who knows what would have happened. In other words, if I just held space for them with an open heart, said, “Universe, I don’t know how they are supposed to show up but I do have a feeling we are meant to be a part of each others lives, so I am open and receiving to whatever you have for me” and then just allowed them to show up as their authentic selves without me judging any part of them or the experience, who knows what would have happened. (By the way, judging doesn’t always have to be negative it could just be that you have your own ideas about what the person or experience with them will be like without getting to know them.) I certainly don’t and what could have happened isn’t the point.
May and June are an incredible lesson for me to just have some trust and to not judge anyone or any experience that appears in my life. Everything has a beautiful ending. You may not see the directions to get to the top of the mountain but the top of the mountain does exist. You may receive about 500 ft of instructions at a time and that is cool too. You just don’t need to have the full picture for everything to work out. If you ever have a gut feeling about something, it is probably “right” (air quotes because you really can’t go wrong”. Just see where it goes.
with love, katie
Ps. May and June I am forever grateful you are in my life 🙂