Introspections & Retrospections

There’s Kindness in Pushing Others Away

I wonder why we push people away, when deep inside, we know we want them closer. Our arms ache to wrap around them; but instead, we only find our hands and heart bleeding where it touched them. And so we pull away, hesitantly, slowly, abruptly.

Why do we push people away? Because sometimes, there’s a faint comfort in being alone, in knowing that you won’t burden people you care about with that insufferable side of you: these cracked facets of your fragmented life, sharp edges where our memories touch one another’s, breaking off slivers from each other that become tears. And madly, we try to make it whole again, jigsaw puzzles that continuously change shape with each mistake and regret, until we realize that the empty spaces that was once us in their lives are now gone, filled and replaced by other pieces. And we find ourselves carrying around broken parts, wondering where we can fit in again.

And so we push them away, rather than pull them down into that abyss where our soul should have been: this entity that longs for brightness, only to find itself ever-struggling with the shadows. Maybe we pushed them away at first because we are hurt; maybe eventually, we pushed them away because we know they don’t deserve to be hurt as well, to be inflicted with our misunderstood and oft-ridiculed pains, from which we lash out in sheer frustration. We push them away, because we love— in our own broken, twisted way. Selfless concern trapped within a shell of self-centeredness; self-sacrificing, yet at the expense of sacrificing relationships.

We push away, in vain hope that they won’t meekly let go of us. We push away— yet somehow wishing, wondering if they would bother pulling us back. We push away, because we’re desperately trying to find the things that won’t break with a gentle nudge, that won’t fall away with a slight touch— objects that would last, and people that would stay. What and who would remain when the last reasons and excuses and justifications to care, to struggle, to hold on, have stood against the fury of our emotional storms and chaotic thoughts.

We push away, because God knows, we’ve been pushed around a lot: this heart that’s aching with and for love, longing only to belong. We push away to be free— not just from the walls of others’ expectation, but to be released from our very own expectations encaging us.

So if we push you away, when others push you away, maybe we’re just being kind to you. Because that’s better than me unloving you, unwanting you, unremembering you. Because being pushed away is better than simply being left behind, being walked away from, being simply forgotten. We push away to let you go, because in our broken way, we care.

But I don’t want your kindness.

Please, choose to stay.


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