“And if I asked you to name all the things that you love, how long would it take for you to name yourself?” – Unknown
I was hesitant to write a post about relationships (again) because it’s not my favorite thing to discuss, especially not on this space. I pride myself on being transparent so I knew that if I did discuss it, I’d have to tell my truth, despite what someone else might say or how they might feel.
And the truth is, I thought I lost. I was embarrassed by this perceived loss. I didn’t think it had to end but..
Do you remember Maggie Carpenter? Maggie was Julia Roberts’ character in Runaway Bride. In the movie, Maggie prepared to walk down the aisle several times, only to change her mind and run away. News outlets took interest in her story, particularly a columnist named Ike (played by Richard Gere).
During his research for the story, Ike realizes that Maggie is adjusting her interests to mimic those of her fiancés in order to please them.
Maggie then explains that she had been running because every other guy she was engaged to was only engaged to the idea she had created for them rather than the real her, but with Ike she ran because, even though he truly understood her, she didn’t understand herself. Wikipedia
Just like Maggie, I got lost. First, I got lost in trying to please and then I lost myself.
I met him at my 27th birthday celebration. I was pretty drunk so I didn’t remember much of him. He seemed quiet. Not my type. I had soon forgotten him until he tweeted me a birthday shout out the next day. We became fast friends and lovers.
Although we barely had anything in common, I enjoyed his company and conversation. I thought I finally met someone I could begin to be completely vulnerable with. And vulnerable I was. But I wasn’t prepared for all of the other emotions that come with matters of the heart. So many heavy emotions that I knew were unnecessary to what we had. At the end of the day, he was only my friend. We had no accountability to each other’s feelings.
I knew this position a little too well. I was psuedo-dating again.
So of course I beat myself up about it. I didn’t tell anyone. It hurts me to admit that in the attempt to be what someone else wanted me to be, I lost some of what made me unique: my identity. I became worried about how he would interpret my actions instead of being my usual self. I had lost, big time. I lost the most important person to me and I didn’t know how to get her back. And I was embarrassed to admit this openly. So I never have. Until this moment.
Even when things seemed to be on the up-and-up, I still held back because when I inquired, he’d say that he wasn’t ready. Later on, I finally understood that to mean “you’re just not it”. And honestly, that is okay.
I did everything I said I would in order to be the vulnerable person I set out to be. He didn’t accept it because I am not the girl that he needs.
I told myself that my 30s would be all about me going after what (and who) I really wanted and I’ve been doing just that.
I’ve been on a vulnerability journey these past four years and I must say, it’s been one of the most challenging things I’ve ever decided to do. And believe me, I’ve tried. Some would say for far too long. But I didn’t want to have another failed psuedo-relationship. Even when things weren’t going as planned, I still thought the steps, however small, were taking me in the direction of a committed relationship.
It takes a lot of self-confidence and self-love to choose to wait for what is best for you. I’m learning that.
Although I’m most comfortable as a single woman, I now know what I am capable of. I know that I can give and receive love in different ways. I believe in God’s timing and that it can happen for me.
The beauty of being single is in the growth.
The blessing of being single is in the lessons.
Photo credit: My Student Style blog