I have a tendency to assign meaning to others’ actions as reflections of what they think of me and in turn, who I am and what I think of me. I’d say it’s one of the pillars of my overthinking. I’m working on it. It’s particularly difficult for me, though, because I’ve always been someone who looks for meaning in everything, good or bad.

Like in elementary school, I assigned numbers to the letters of the alphabet to know the combinations of numbers that formed my loved ones’ names. In middle and high school, I got a thrill from annotating books because it meant that everything was open to interpretation. There was symbolism EVERYWHERE. Each word could mean something else. The writer wrote one thing, but meant something entirely different.

When teachers would ask us to draw something, I did not have the artistic aptitude for a masterpiece, but each mark, each stroke, each figure represented something.

Even when giving gifts, I’ve always drifted towards items that mean something to the receiver as opposed to something with monetary value.

So when my therapist tells me to not read into what other people say or what they do, it’s a bit of a challenge, to say the least.

I don’t know where it comes from. I guess I like thinking that people are more than what they say or do. There’s a reason behind those words and actions. There’s a space between what you think and what you say, and there are words trapped there that are how you actually feel.

But maybe I’m just in denial, and my therapist is right. Not everything has a reason. If you can’t translate your thoughts into words or actions, then they’re useless. You can’t blame anyone for your complacency but yourself.


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