Often times I find myself in the rawest moments of a breakup, or the end to an almost relationship. The moment where you are alone, left to realize that there will be no more late night calls, or constant text messages, no more partner in crime or a reliable movie date. In these moments I am alone, I really allow myself to feel. Not the muffled feeling where you keep quiet and have to plaster on the brave face so your roommates don't worry again. No, this is the feeling of complete despair, crying as I wish, throwing what I please, screaming what I desire.
My world as I know it has just stopped mid-rotation. My heart feels its heaviest. My anxiety at its highest.
Once I allow myself the appropriate amount of time to feel, no more and no less, but also no rush on the process, I can reflect. Once I reflect, I go back to the same thought, time after time. Maybe it is a defense mechanism, maybe it is my own way of making myself feel better. Maybe it is the truth.
“I was settling. He wasn't really giving me what I want.”
I say this to myself more often than I would like to admit. I find myself in relationships and “almost relationships” more often than I would like to share. I never realized how frequently I was talking to someone or dating someone until a wise woman I work with asked me, “Why do you always have to have someone?”
That kind of made me stop and think. Why DO I always have to have someone romantically in my life?
My first answer was this: I like the company.
That was a coward's answer. I have friends—I have plenty of friends to provide me with company.
So here is my REAL answer:
I am going to be as raw as I can with this. Bless my heart if someone I personally know stumbles across this.
I never had much self esteem. I never thought highly of myself. From a very young age, I was pegged as sensitive, crazy, wild, emotional, clingy and even needy. I kept trying to find answers as to why I am this way. I know I am all of those things. I kept using my astrological sign as my excuse. Although that plays a huge part in our character, it does not determine our destiny. We have the power to control who we want to be. So here is my excuse: That's just who I am. I am wild, I am crazy, sensitive, emotional, clingy, and needy, but I am ME. Fearlessly.
I know all of these qualities are hard to desire when it comes to a romantic relationship. I always found myself getting incredibly immersed in a relationship, often feeling like I am putting in more effort, and caring more. But if someone found themselves to enjoy me, I have to keep them around, right? I will never find another man to be as accepting as the one I had in the present moment. What I realized was, when I am settling for these men, I am also not being myself. I am not giving the relationship all of my effort; I am very distant and cold. I compromise myself just for the sake of being in a relationship. I'm scared. I am so scared to end up alone that I dump who I am. That is not right. That is not fearless me. That is fearful me. “Me” has never been known to live in fear.
My friends label me brave when I leave these men. Brave for leaving these men because they are not the kind of man I want, and not usually the kind of man to treat me as I deserve. Though they are right, they have no idea my motives for getting involved in the first place, and in this instance, to me, the fear instilled in me that caused me to settle is far larger than my bravery to realize my happiness should not be compromised.
If you ask my friends who they think I am, they all would say “a catch.”. I often give relationship advice and am the voice of reason for both my male and female friends, and they all tell me a man is going to be very lucky to have me some day. These people know me better than anyone. I really ought to start listening to them. I really ought to be fearfully me, regardless of if a man likes it.
Fast forward now. It is January 3rd of 2018 and I just broke up with yet another one of these settled for men. I'm at work, I declare that I am so over these games I play with myself. I need to take some time to just be me, to enjoy myself, to do things I love to do, to do the things I want to do. My coworker smelled a bet on this. $100 to me if I can stay out of a relationship and not go on any dates. $100 to her if I break. For a whole year. 2018 is to be the year I spend on myself.
So fast forward again. It is February 11th, 2018. I am only one month into this year of me and I have never been happier. I began caring for succulents again. I spend a lot more time reading. O spend a lot of time with my friends. I began painting again. I spend a lot of time caring for my skin, my hair, and my nails. I have planned an entire vacation to Harry Potter World with my best friend for my birthday, and look!! I am even writing again. I am loving myself so much. So much more than anyone can love me right now.
In my attempt to be fearfully me, I have actually been living in fear. This coward's way of living stopped on January 3rd, 2018. I do not need to find my other half. I am not half empty. I am whole. I do not need to find my better half, I am perfectly whole. I do not need to find someone to grow old with. I do not need to find a big, strong man to support me. I am creating a life that I can live on my own. Making my own money, providing my own happiness, taking myself out on dates. I am whole. I am fearfully me.