The person who always thought about other people and their feelings. The person that’ll move over to an uncomfortable spot so someone else can be comfortable. The person who would try to express themselves but somehow was interrupted in the midst of my climax of a story. The person who’ll say “I’m sorry” for nothing or “excuse me” even when there was plenty of space for me to pass by. The person who didn’t want to waste anyone’s time with my problems. That was me.
I thought I was being polite, nice, selfless, thoughtful, respectful, and good. That’s what I wanted to be characterized as; I didn’t know this was a form of anxiety. I didn’t understand that being this person led me to feel uncomfortable to ask for what I deserved and wanted. I didn’t want to take up anyone’s space or time.
I started to look at people who weren’t apologetic and thought of them as rude or inconsiderate. But that’s when I learned. A closed mouth doesn’t get fed. They were aware of their authority to take up space. They understood they needed to stand up and be confident to complete their goals. Sometimes its okay to not take the “good place” route.
In exchange for my space, I gave people enjoyment or the ability to express themselves. I wanted that in return. I deserved that in return. I stopped apologizing for the things that I wanted. I spoke my mind and if anyone interrupted me, I understood that I have the right to stop them, acknowledge myself in the communication mode and continue on with my sentence. Taking up space is a self-care act and I don’t apologize for it.
There are people who know that you’re not an authoritative figure of your space and will take advantage. Having manners and respect is essential but never mistake them as a reason to be a pushover. It’s okay to say no when you don’t want to do something. It’s okay to not give your energy and space without consent. Remember, you have the right to exist in this world; never apologize for respectfully taking up space.