Dear Petty Labelle,
I haven’t seen you in a long time but I saw you tonight. How are you, Petty? I see you’re still so petty, as usual. I try to stay away from you and just keep my interactions with people very positive. But from time to time, you like to pay me a visit and then you just wreak havoc. Not cool, Petty.
I don’t particularly dislike when you’re around, because you help me release a lot of negative energy. But I know you shouldn’t be near me. I do really hurtful things and say awful things to people whenever you’re around. Whenever you’re around, I begin to like the feeling of knowing I can manipulate someone else’s feelings. Knowing that I can turn someone else’s day upside down if I say the right thing. I can make someone feel so disrespected and so offended at the drop of a hat when you come over. Shame on you, Petty.
Why does it feel so good when you are around, Petty? You’re not a positive role model, you don’t make my relationships with other people better. You don’t create harmony, peace, and love. You destroy things around me, and then you laugh at other people’s expense. You create discord and discomfort. You sever ties. I don’t like you, Petty Labelle.
Tonight, I had a fight with someone, and I really didn’t need to. I could have tried to figure out where my feelings of frustration were actually coming from, and then I could have just dealt with it on my own. Without having to take it to an unnecessary place of insults and screams. I know better than to raise my voice and cut people off when they’re trying to talk to me. I know better than to say exactly what I know is going to piss someone else off. But tonight, I chose to indulge. It felt really good. To just scream back and let those nasty words out of my mouth. I really don’t like you, Petty.
I had a valid reason for being upset, but I did not have a valid reason for escalating it. You shouldn’t have come over, Petty. I shouldn’t be talking to you or indulging in your shenanigans. But the truth is, I have been dealing with a lot of stress lately. And unfortunately for those around me, I have not been taking care of myself and letting out the stress in a healthier way. I have been bottling up everything and carrying everything with me for the past month or so.
I felt out of balance but I did not say anything. You knew this too, Petty.
I can’t keep letting you influence me like this, Petty. You don’t have all the answers, and you don’t have my best interest. I’m not listening to you anymore. As I started writing you this letter, something came over to me. It was Awareness. She came to me and provided a moment for me to think about what had happened. She allowed me to think deeply so I could figure out why it had felt so good to scream those obscenities. She reminded me that I haven’t done my regular yoga classes in about a month. She reminded me that I was tired.
I’m so glad I have been better equipped with healing tools this time around. You can’t take me down this rollercoaster ride of emotions anymore, Petty. I don’t indulge in your crap for too long anymore. I decided to stop my friend before he left the house and apologize. I apologized for unleashing my crap onto him. I apologized for letting you sit in between our conversation. I explained to him that this was just a moment of unleashing negative energy in a negative way.
I didn’t let him walk away with you, Petty. He couldn’t take you with him because I made you leave before he could.
You like to walk away with the person I have hurt in hopes that they retaliate against me. Not this time, Petty Labelle. You held my hand during that conversation, but I decided to let go of your hand and hold my friend’s hand instead. So, my dearest Petty Labelle, you didn’t win this time. Although Pride told me to listen to you and let my friend leave, I chose not to listen to him either. You’re not welcome here anymore, Petty. You no longer hold a place in me. You can’t walk with me for the rest of my life.
Miss Petty Labelle; you can leave, get the hell out, and don’t come back.
To my Life Travelers: Read my letter to performance anxiety. This has been an ongoing conversation with her.