I caved. After dodging some calamitous trends and memes in the social media world, I let people “inbox” me their questions, hoping no one would ask me anything too off-kilter. In previous exercises, people have done everything from asking me to predict their futures to openly wondering why I didn’t want to meet up with them. I squirmed internally and gave the most appropriate response possible (and haven’t tried to meet them since).I mean, other people can read my response and they have a record of my interaction, and that in and of itself is a commitment.
It’s probably why I never make promises I can’t keep.
I might say something like, “I’ll try my hardest to be there” with a fat asterisk that continues, “weather-permitting, or if I already made a commitment that I won’t be able to leave early from, or if I just gave the kids a quiz that day and I have to grade it to let them know I’m being serious about their education.” It’s probably why I don’t commit to events often, either. I rarely attend things, so when I do, people genuinely drop their jaw when I do make it out.
My word is my bond.
It’s probably why I don’t say very much, either. There’s so few things I’m open with in public forums nowadays, my sex and love life highest amongst them. Of course, when I post a request to those in my network to inbox me questions, the first one would be about relationships. I probably would have punted a couple of years ago, but now I can see the field better, so I’m willing to go for the touchdown with the end zone much closer than before.
My friend Danielle asks, “Why are those who are afraid of commitment so afraid? What is their fear?”
“… Too many reasons, but my best reason: They’re often afraid of commitment because, essentially, you’re giving yourself to another person. There are studies that show that people who have an amorous relationship with someone else develop a semi-symbiotic relationship too, so when they break up, it makes them feel like they lost a part of themselves. If you constantly find yourself giving of yourself so much, it gets harder to trust that much of your person to someone else unless they know how to take care of it.”
It’s so true in almost any relationship you take on. I just know from personal experience that the idea of commitment is much easier to work through than the action of commitment. What commitment entails is much more than saying it. I’m still learning this thing about commitment, but I have something worth fighting for. I’m not perfect, but I’m giving more of my person to the other. And if that’s happening, then that means I’m trusting them with more of me.
If I ever perfect the potion for commitment, I’ll put it in a bottle. Not to sell it, just to take a whiff of it whenever I need it in other parts of my life, too.
Jose, who vows to only take on (at most) 3 memes a month …