Lessons Learned Late are Better than Lessons Never Learned

There are people who say they don't care, but in truth they actually care very much. Their statement is in fact a battle cry, a defense mechanism raised to keep themselves from getting hurt. Then there are people who say they don't care, and really don't. They've either gotten over or never needed the opinions of other people.

I've always cared, and to my own detriment, I confess. I always cared when kids made fun of me, or threw rocks at me. I've always care when people slander and malign me, and I always care when people misjudge who I am as a person. Hell, that's what artists want most: to be understood. When I'm misunderstood or misjudged, it always hurts...

Here I am, three and-a-half years away from 60, and I think I've finally learned, and hey, I really don't care about people who don't like me, or are jealous of me, or don't approve of me, or just don't "get" me.

Caring what people think about me has kept me from not doing things they thought I shouldn't do, but I should have done, and from doing things that I knew I should do and I didn't. According to some people, we go around only once. If they're right, then it's a crime to live for other people's opinions of us. But if I'm right in believing that we come back again and again, then I've let other people get in the way of my growth and evolution. Either way, I've messed up. If someone doesn't like the fact that I believe in reincarnation, so what? If someone doesn't approve of my loving wine, what business is that of theirs? If someone thinks my marriage is perverted, screw 'em.

What started this is that I wanted to write an entry about wine, but then I thought about some of the Flying Monkeys out there who like to leave comments about me being an alcoholic. Truth is, I'm not. I can't afford to be for one thing and for another, I have a horror of addiction. That's when I started wondering why I should care what stalkers and trolls think about me. That's when I realized that the opinions of people like that just don't matter. They can't matter. Besides, if I were an alcoholic, why should they care? It's none of their damned business. It seems to me that in the last twenty years, people have gotten far too concerned about how other people live their lives. What was it Billy Joel sang?

I don't care what you say anymore, this is my life;
Go ahead with your own life, and leave me alone!

So I'm going to post about wine if I want. And reincarnation. And about being in a committed relationship with a woman for ten years. The people who have a problem with who and what I am can choose not to come here. As Ville always says, "Don't like it, don't look." And if they leave one of their pointless comments I'll just delete it.

I think our downfall comes when we care about the opinions of people of lesser integrity, or the comments made by internet trolls, or the gossip of people who don't deserve us. Caring about the opinions of those who either don't like us or people who carry grudges, only gives them power and they know it. That's what they prey on. Well, I've learned and I'm taking away their power over me.