I can make you love me.
Oh, yes, I can.
- I’m smart. I’ll impress you with all the things I know.
- I’m so adorable. Just look at how adorable I am with my cute clothes and perfect hair and makeup. Did you check out my shoes?
- I am completely and totally lovable. I don’t fight or even disagree. I am so compliant.
- Did I mention cute?
- I will please you in every possible way. I just need to figure you out. So tell me, tell me, tell me. Tell me everything so I can fill my head with you.
- I will be the most perfect partner you ever had. Just give me a chance.
- I will win you over. You won’t be able to resist.
There was a time when this was the soundtrack playing in the background of every relationship I was in. It usually started before I even technically got into a relationship. Sometimes as early as a first glance. Now, when I think about this mind set, I can’t help but wonder at how exhausted I must have been all that time. Trying to be the perfect woman for every man I was with. Changing myself, twisting myself around this way and that, struggling to make it just right.
Of course, you know how this ends. Maybe you’ve been here yourself. Maybe you’re still here. Trying to win people over. We do it with our bosses, children, friends, and lovers. And we tried to do it with our parents. The ending is always the same. We may get some attention at first (which feels really great), but eventually, we must show that we are human. Because we are.
I am not perfect.
- I don’t know everything.
- I wake up with morning breath and I don’t always shave my legs.
- I am loud, I curse, and I talk too much.
- I am sometimes impatient and irritable. I sometimes have opinions that don’t line up with everyone else’s. Sometimes I want to have it my way.
- Sometimes I am just not cute.
- There are times when I forget things you’ve said. And other times when I honestly just don’t care that much. I’m tired. I’m cranky. I’m hungry.
- I make messes. I don’t always clean up after myself. My digestion isn’t always reliable. I am a picky eater (in an expensive way).
And these things scare the hell out of me. Because maybe you won’t like them. And then you won’t like me. But if there is any chance of us being together, then I need to be authentically me, and you need to be authentically you. And we can then see if we can tolerate the times when one or both of us is not cute, pleasing, charming, smart, together, or fun.
And I need to be really clear on the difference between being my authentic self and being my rebellious, in your face, take this (you @#$) self, because I’m pissed off at you and the world for not loving me exactly the way I want, all the time, in every place, perfectly. Because you aren’t perfect either.
Just be yourself. Your big, authentic, kind, compassionate, real, imperfect, loud, messy, beautiful self. Whoever can’t handle that wasn’t the right one for you anyway.