A Letter to Myself

Dear Bossy Fran,

Ah, you think I don’t see you, but I do!

Sometimes you fool other people. Who? They would ask. Bossy Fran? We don’t know her.

But they do, because you are always standing right behind me, inserting yourself into my thoughts, sometimes blurting out before I can stop you.

But now I am breaking up with you, Bossy Fran. The time is right, because all my rationalizations are gone. I am no longer a parent to children, who I have to decide things for. They are grown and I should be talking to them as if they are grown. I am a peer in my marriage; I am not the boss of my husband. I am a peer and colleague in my job, and even though I am older than some, more experienced than some, you and I know full well that they may have more smarts, a fresh outlook, and other skill sets.

Bossy Fran, I’m not going to let you make me take over a meeting or push through an idea ever again. Most especially, I’m not going to let you distract me from learning what I can from others. I’ve come to realize that I spend so much time figuring out the clever thing I’m going to say next, I stop listening well. Whether it’s my grown children, my husband, or my work colleagues, they are all fun and clever and smart, and I don’t need you as a third wheel in my relationships.

Here’s the bottom line, bossy Fran. I like myself best when you are off somewhere else. I actually bring more to the table when you’re not present. You say that doesn’t make sense? That telling people what they should think and do is helping them? Well, turns out you’re wrong. I used to agree with you, because I’m so, so smart. Well guess what- you were misguiding me; I’m not.  And I don’t need to be so smart, because I can be smart enough to learn and accept help from others who may think differently from me.

Bossy Fran, I have come to realize some truths you’re not going to like. Without you I’m a better listener. Without you I think more deeply. Without you I show more respect. Without you I actually learn more! I mean, I learn stuff I really didn’t know, and I even learn stuff I didn’t know that I didn’t know!! You were keeping me from so much, the veil is lifted from my eyes.

And the best of all, and do you want to know what put me over the edge to write you this break up letter? I discovered the real Fran not only gets smarter but is more loveable, too.

Seriously, I’ve been flip and smart-alecky, but this isn’t easy for me, either. I like my bossy self who always felt they had something important to offer. In my honest heart I know I will miss you and your certainty and feeling of self-worth and- let’s just say it- privilege.

And I have a sneaking feeling that you are going to malinger at the edges, try to creep back to me. But I’m watching out for you and in fact I’m building a wall of better habits. Breaking up is hard to do but it is time.

6 thoughts on “A Letter to Myself

  1. Ha, how witty and clever, and so decisive, to address yourself. Admirable that you are ready to change, to mellow down, to be more vulnerable.

    Like

  2. What a great idea, to write a breakup letter to a part of yourself. I’ll have to think about this some more. Ruth, thereisnosuchthingasagodforsakentown.blogspot.com

    Like

  3. I feel you on this, I do. There’s just something about a voice in our heads that continues to speak to us, that continues to expect that we will listen, that continues to try and make sense of our world in a way that is unproductive and unhelpful to ourselves and those around us.

    As for me, I’m not sure that voice is a boss or a fixer at all. I’m not sure who or what the other Lainie is exactly trying to be, but I do know she manages to wreak similar havoc in my life that Bossy Fran has accomplished.

    Perhaps it’s time to start paying her better (or less?) attention…

    Like

  4. Oh my- your letter could have been one I should write! I know I have a tendency to overboss. I love your openness here and the ways you reflect on how bossiness does/ does not serve you. I wonder what those “bossed” would say- I am guessing they do not always feel you are being bossy. Good luck with the break up!

    Like

  5. Oh, I am a “Bossy Trish” and remember thinking that this Isolation Journals prompt was going to be one to come back to. So many of them absolutely hit the writing spot. When you say: “Bossy Fran, I have come to realize some truths you’re not going to like. Without you I’m a better listener. Without you I think more deeply. Without you I show more respect. Without you I actually learn more! I mean, I learn stuff I really didn’t know, and I even learn stuff I didn’t know that I didn’t know!! You were keeping me from so much, the veil is lifted from my eyes,” I have to gulp because this is absolutely the truth. Why is it that I KNOW the truth of it but have such a difficult time changing. Change is hard, right? Love this letter and needed to hear the wisdom in it before another new year begins! Thanks.

    Like

  6. Oh, how I love this self-talk! I started a self-talk journal awhile back, but it fizzled out; I think I just kept repeating the same stuff over and over. Listening more is always at the forefront of my personal goals…if anything this pandemic has taught me, it’s how to be okay with silence. I’ll be interested to see if Bossy Fran shows up with a rebuttal!

    Like

Leave a Reply to Terje Cancel reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s