Someone told me the other day that I was self-centered.  So I decided to look up the definition of the word to see if perhaps they were right.

Self-centered:  1.  concerned solely or chiefly with one’s own interests, welfare, etc.; engrossed in self; selfish; egotistical.     2.  independent, self-sufficient.    3. centered in oneself or itself.

Okay, let me start with #1.  Am I concerned solely about myself?  Hmmm. I spend at least 40 hours a week putting someone else’s needs before my own.  And that is just one person.  So if there are 168 hours in a week, less 56 for sleeping, that gives me 112 hours to be awake.  So if I were only interested in that one person besides myself, I would be thinking only of me 72 hours a week.  Which would be 10.29 hours a day.  My husband works 12 hour shifts, five days a week so if I spend 1 hour a day on his needs that brings me to 9.5 hours to think just of me a day.  Ok, I usually spend 30 minutes a day praying for others…down to 9 hours.  I am usually always available to babysit, visit with a friend, help someone in need, open my house to anyone needing to talk or get away from their struggles and of course, because these things aren’t weekly I can’t put an hour value on these.  But let’s just say I have 6 hours everyday just for me.  That is 25% of my life.

#2.  Independent and self-sufficient.   Guilty as charged.   I HATE asking for help.  Not because I think I can do it all but because I don’t want to put anyone out or take them away from something else.  I put their needs before mine (real or imagined).

#3.  Centered in oneself.   I suppose I am.  I only have so much energy to expend.  I can give only so much of myself before my body physically starts to breakdown.  And I can only have so much of other people’s burdens in my brain before it too, starts to break down.

So how do we decide between the negative “self-centered” and the healthy “centered-self”?   Do others get to decide which label to attach to us?   Is there a percentage of time that I should spend on others that negates the time spent on myself?  What if I give my best to some and only what I have left to others?   How do I decide who gets what from me?  And what about me?  Are we only supposed to get the crumbs of our life energy?  I try to live as Christ would have me live.  I give as much of myself to others as I humanly (in the condition I am in today) possible.  But there are times I have to stop and put myself first or I will have nothing to give anyone else.  I get so frustrated that other people seem to know what I should be doing better than I do.  Can they see into my soul, my heart, my brain.  Do they get a daily printout of all the things I have done, thought, prayed about?  STOP LABELING ME!  Stop thinking you know everything about me.  There is only One who does and I strive daily to be as He would have me.  Unless you have gotten a message from Him directly, do not attempt to alter me.  He will change me as He sees fit and I WILL listen to His voice.  You know, I may not be the person you see me as.  I am His and I listen for His will for my life.

Conclusion?   Yes, I do spend time on myself, for myself, about myself because I am worthy of consideration, too.  I have needs the same as you do and sometimes, yes I am going to say it…I PUT MYSELF FIRST.    So, I guess you can add self-centered to my litany of labels others have placed on me.  But I know the label I am most proud of and not matter what you say about me or to me, that label will stand the test of time and for all eternity.  I AM A CHILD OF THE LIVING GOD AND I AM LOVED BY HIM JUST BECAUSE I AM.


About queenrobyn

61 yrs.old, wife, mother, grandma, artist, humorist, friend, caregiver, blogger, retired singer, rughooker, doll and mohair teddy bearmaker, born-again Christian, rebel, optimist, addicted Ebay shopper, collector (or hoarder as my husband would tell you), glamper, lover of all things old and worn (like me!)

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