Validation Vs Fulfillment
Writing this earlier than usual because it's really been on my mind.
The further I get from T, the more I realize some fundamental differences between me and him.
Validation from others is nice, a warm, fuzzy feeling in your chest. It can come in any form, verbal, physical, gifts, any of these. And of course, the response to it, is to usually keep doing whatever gets you that validation. It feels good to be liked, or produce things that are liked.
But it's a rabbit hole that never ends. You give in, and you become a follower, doing whatever will get you that validation. You even become convinced its what you want, until you don't even recognize yourself in the mirror. I fell down that hole once, and barely made it out. And that hole swallowed T whole.
Fulfillment on the other hand, comes from inside yourself. It's a victory with each step forward into the light, validated by yourself first and foremost. Making little realizations of "I don't do [X] anymore" and the joy that comes with it. It's freedom, guided by yourself rather than anyone else. And it's the road I'm picking.