“We are ten gallon people, but we may have been born into families of people that have pint capacities. When you are a ten gallon person you want love on a ten gallon level, but if you fool around and hook up with a pint person, then they could be giving you all that they have. Sincerely giving you everything, but it doesn’t fill you up because you are bigger than that. Because you operate on such a higher level that you say, ‘Is that it? Is that all you’re going to give me?’” – T.D. Jakes

This quote changed my life. These words finally addressed the absolute innermost part of my soul and being. Upon learning that who I am and have always been is ten gallons, my outlook on the people that I put in my life changed. This next post is going to be about the hardships of being ten gallons and the way that we ten gallon humans love. It will also be applied to being a TCK. This by no means speaks for all ten gallon people – this is just my frame of mind.

As TCK’s, when it comes to friendship, we have developed a solid method to get the most out of the human we befriend in the short time we have with one another. Acknowledging that at any moment, one of us can be ripped out of the equation and moved to a new place, the importance of making the most of that friendship becomes a priority. There’s almost a desperate level of initiation between two TCK’s – wanting to learn the most you can about a person, wanting to spend as much time as possible together, being grateful for the short time you have together and promising, but most likely failing, to keep in touch with them long after they move.

This is the only way I have known how to be a friend: fully, loyally, unwaveringly. Sometimes, that’s “too much” for some people to handle. I’ve learned after years of blaming myself that you can’t take responsibility for the lack of intensity people have toward you. You can’t force anyone to unconditionally love you. Part of unconditional love is acceptance, and people are intolerant, so when you do meet humans who choose to commit to you, grow with you, teach you and take your guidance, who love you when you are at your worst and love you even if you are not speaking to one another, that is when you know you have met a spectacular person that is worth making space for in your life.

I have been told by people I had once considered friends that I am too much. Not all of them have said this with their words, but when they disappear suddenly and I find myself estranged, I realize, there goes another one who wasn’t worth it; good riddance and goodbye.

People are always blaming others for their own insecurities. I’ve learned that it is not my fault or my job to pick the mirror up and show you your reflection. It is my job to work on being the best version of myself I can be, strive daily to empower myself and grow, learn how to deal with my emotions, and how to navigate through life with the “intense” love that has been graced to me.

I will never again apologize for being myself.

Sometimes it’s okay to not make things a big deal. If someone flips out at you, if someone projects their mess onto you, that’s not your burden to carry. Don’t let your shoulders be weighed down by those who aren’t accountable to themselves. You do not deserve this kind of treatment.

Instead, my suggestion is to deal with that unseaming dynamic with grace. You do no harm by being kind to others despite their cruelty towards you. You also don’t have to always engage with ferocity if someone tries to come for your life. You can take the tension, diffuse it, and step away. You have every right to do that.

I promise to put myself first. If I had given up on seeking out friendship every time there was a person who wasn’t ready for my kind of love, then I would have lost out on giving that unconditional commitment to the people who are in my life, who embraced it, who I am so grateful to have today.

Don’t let anyone make you feel like you can’t be one hundred percent yourself. If you let them take that power from you, you take your greatness away from people who have been looking for it their whole life. You take away your impact – your legacy. And that’s not an option.

Instead, let them deal with their own issues in their own time, step away, and work on motivating yourself toward making better friends going forward. Nothing has to end in tragedy, truly. It can be a simple simmering into peace and quiet, and you can be cordial and kind and move on with your life in a way that doesn’t overwhelm or disrupt your well-deserved, worked-on happiness.

Before you are ten gallons for anyone else, pour that endless love into yourself first.


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