i just cringe

Posted: June 24th, 2014 | No Comments »

from roxane gay (bolding my own):

Part of the reason relationships and friendships can be so difficult for me is because there is a part of me that thinks I have to get things just right. I have to say the right things and do the right things or I won’t be liked or loved anymore. It’s stressful so then I engage in an elaborate attempt at being the best friend or girlfriend and get further and further away from who I really am, someone with a good heart, but also someone who may not always get things right. I find myself apologizing for things I shouldn’t be apologizing for, things I am not at all sorry for. I find myself apologizing for who I am.

With age comes self awareness, or something that looks like self awareness and so I try to be on the look out for patterns of behavior, choices I’m making where I’m trying too hard, giving too much, reaching too intently for being right where right is what someone else wants me to be. It’s scary though, trying to be yourself and hoping yourself is enough. It’s scary believing that you, as you are, could ever be enough.

When I look back on so many of my relationships, particularly in my twenties and into my early thirties, I just cringe. There is nothing but humiliation there. I think, “No wonder that relationship didn’t work out.” I see how, in trying to get things right, I was getting things desperately wrong over and over and over again.

i think back on jonathan in portland (i mean, among others: casey; that guy who’s name i can’t remember who worked at aalto; dave mcdonald) and just feel so embarrassed. like, what was i thinking. jonathan, especially, since i dated him for EIGHT MONTHS, and he wasn’t nice or great or funny or interesting and i just persisted with it. cried when he broke up with me and then took him back when he said he’d made a mistake, even though he hadn’t, we were a terrible match, we were hardly even in the match zone, then went to spain and france to visit him and had silent dinners with him in parisian thai restaurants and on trains to cadaques. the best part of that trip was after we broke up, i remember riding the parisian ferris wheel and feeling so loose and happy and thinking how he would have hated it.

VIEW FROM THE PARISIAN FERRIS WHEEL
(not pictured: freedom, wisdom, growing up, macarons)

paris feris wheel

 

 



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