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Those who know me know that I am a compassionate and sincere person. Sometimes I can be a little too compassionate. I know, what a terrible problem to have, right? It takes a lot for me to cut someone out of my life because I feel as though I can always find a reason to give them the benefit of the doubt. I mess up all the time, so why be callous towards the mistakes of another? I'm realizing more and more as time passes how naive that philosophy makes me seem. Not because I strive to be forgiving, no; that is a trait of mine that I am proud of. It's because I willingly sacrifice my happiness, sometimes over a whim, for the benefit of another - whether they deserve it or not. That last bit is the kicker.

Where is the line that determines when it's time to part ways with someone? For me, it is a thin, blurry line that is easily missed. I'll find a way to justify your bullshit. I'll second guess myself. Maybe it was me, not them.

In many cases, it is me. In this case it is not.

My heart is divided into three pieces. My family gets one piece. My wife gets another. Music and the art of creativity gets what remains. When something threatens the peace of any of these pillars in my life, my switch turns. I become as cold and unforgiving as the winter months up North. This doubles as a good and bad thing. It's good that I can actually reach that place when I need to. It's bad that it takes so long to identify and eliminate toxicity from my life. The delayed reaction only causes me more pain in the long run. I won't be taken advantage of forever, just as close to it as possible - or so it seems.

This week begins a new frame of mind for me. I am not selfish for defending my happiness and my inner peace. I won't let the music that lives in me be perverted by simple minded comparison tactics and an unhealthy co-dependence on others. It is too special for that.

Although I tend to fear change, I know that getting away from bad influences is the right decision for me. We will still communicate, perhaps even collaborate here and there. But you must now consider the faucet from which my truest creativity and vulnerability flows to be closed to you forever. I won't let you poison that well anymore.

If there is someone who facilitates negativity in your life, you need to let them go. We as humans must defend our own peace and our own happiness, because no one else will.



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