By Liz Pardue-Schultz
I don’t know if I’ve actually expressed this to you, but you being in my life is far from convenient. In fact, more often than not, interactions with you involve me mentally strapping in and being prepared for a whole ordeal. You are needy and demanding and draining and complicated.
Simply put, you are a complete pain in my ass, but dammit if you’re not my absolute favorite of all of them.
No matter what, I’m still going to pick up the phone every single time you call, and I’m never going to stop ferociously defending you when anyone else talks sh*t. I’m going to keep helping you clean up your messes and encouraging you to stop making them. And even though we both know you’ll probably never change, I’m going to be right here continuing to earnestly believe that you have it in you to not be such a damn wreck.
Listen, I’ve provided the same moral support and comforting pep talks about your same bullsh*t problems for forever in our love-hate relationship, and even though I mean every word while I’m giving you this fervent encouragement, I’m aware that it’s the same sh*t repeated ad nauseum. I’ve watched you make the same dumbass mistakes and walk ass-first into your own self-perpetuated drama more times than I can count, safe in the knowledge that this is exactly what I signed up for.
I’ve had more interventions about your self-involvement than anybody really should after a dozen times. But you know what? I’m going to keep giving you my spirited lectures every time you ask for them from now until we’re both dead if they’re what keeps you going and around.
You are a pain in the ass, but you’re my pain in the ass.
My life would absolutely be easier without you in it, but it wouldn’t be nearly as much fun. Sure, if I cut ties with you, it’d save me countless hours of drama and immeasurable amounts of stress, but it would also be flat, bland, and every other adjective that contributes to a life not worth living. If you weren’t around, I don’t know if I’d want to keep moving forward to new adventures myself.
This is not to say your drama is amusing to me, by the way. It really, really isn’t. I don’t sit over here and delight in schadenfreude, and a lot of the time I have to wonder what person in her right mind would tolerate your level of insanity, let alone continue to invite it back into her life.
The reason I stick around in this love-hate relationship is twofold: First of all, your chaos is never detrimental to me, personally. You aren’t taking advantage of my love or my generosity and you certainly don’t hijack my life. We have healthy boundaries, even when I find myself picking up your messy-ass pieces yet again. You’re just a lot to deal with at best and exhausting at worst, but you’re never hurtful.
Secondly — and most significantly — this thing we have together is magically life-affirming in ways unlike any I’ve ever had with anyone else. Ever. With you, I am completely myself and usually at my very best. You make me feel alive and valid and important and everything I can never quite do enough for myself.
You are the voice that resonates with me the most in this world of people trying to sell me self-hate and their own toxic noise.
If dealing with you being a royal pain in my ass is the price I have to pay to feel unconditionally loved, celebrated, and completely understood by someone I think the same about, there’s no question that I’ll continue to do just that.
This article originally appeared on YourTango.
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