Thursday, 4 February 2010

Is It Me?

So I was going to write about DG, who actually called, but something far more interesting and infinitely more challenging has just appeared in my email inbox.

One of the good things about this blog is not only being able to express what’s on my mind instantly, but it is also being able to be honest and open about my own insecurities and issues to put them on public view and stand by them.

I received a really interesting comment today, which I have published un-moderated, because it was upfront, honest and some real thought had gone into it.

First, I would like to thank VB for taking the time to read my blog and then write to me, despite them not agreeing with my point of view.

Which leads me to the question VB posed which eventually hits all of us long-term singletons - Is It Me?

When I first started the blog I was in a really dark place in my life. My confidence was pretty much shot. A series of truly crappy dating decisions, tailed off by breaking up with a particularly cold fish left me numb.

Added to that was a deep-seated dissatisfaction with where my life was headed in general, which left me feeling mentally and emotionally drained.

Was I ever going to meet The One ? Was I letting my demons control me and actually perpetuating my own self destructive pattern.

I looked at what I had done to myself. Turned myself into a workaholic hermit, who ventured out rarely and however, bubbly and outgoing I appeared on the outside, inside I was very slowly dying. I decided break the pattern. Not wait for things to come to me, but to go and get them.

First I had to confront the fact that I’m not actually perfect. Fabulous! Always, but not perfect. Not by a long shot - I see and own my faults. I can be very picky and judgemental, a pain in the proverbial arse, rude, fiery, demanding, impatient and precious.

But I have never ever hidden these darker sides of myself from my friends or mates. What you see is what you get with me. Thankfully and without them I would be very probably a raging basket, I am surrounded by family, friends and allies.

When things are ‘difficult’ and I am running away and not dealing with the issues at hand, they will with their brunt honesty and love, pull me back from the real lows I still regularly experience and save me from being a truly lost cause.

Am I cynical about men – yes, to a degree. I would be a big fat liar if I said I wasn’t. You learn from your experiences and however hard you try to not to let it happen, your opinions do become a little jaded.

But that doesn’t mean for one minute that I wouldn’t gladly welcome into my life, don’t believe in or know some truly amazing men, who feature strongly in my life and remind me, that anything is possible if you are honest and open to it.

There's M who's like an older brother to me, even though he’s younger than me and still looks about 12 !! I love him because he knows me – inside out. He knows where all of my skeletons are buried. My good times and really my dark times. But he always has my back.

M has never once let me down or ever disappointed me. I value his judgement and the fact that he never lets me get away with things, especially when I am totally in the wrong. Despite knowing all the good and bad about me, he deems me worthy to be in his life and that of his family.

A whose bluntness has sometimes been extremely painful to hear, but whose support and love are constant and completely unconditional and who makes me laugh until I’ve cried sometimes. Big D – or as I sometimes like to call him 'The Real Deal' who I adore for his spirit, love of life and overwhelming warmth.

F who is the most amazing father and friend, J who is goodness personified. S who dragged me kicking and screaming to the finish line with my degree and now C who has turned out (despite my initial hysterical judgemental misgivings ) to be pure gold and I've been so lucky to have around recently, with all my dramas.

Have I been hard about a lot of the men I’ve encountered yes, when they’ve amused me, angered me or when they have just out and out flummoxed me with their behaviour. Have I been challenged on this….yes, as I should be by friends, who want me to rise above any negativity I may harbour. Do I listen ! Yes, which is why my particular journey isn’t quite finished yet.

The major differences I have commented on, are the completely opposite approaches men and women adopt to deal with good and bad dating. Some women dissect every single detail of what went wrong invariably and often without realising it; they will turn all of that negativity in on themselve and hold it tightly unable to let go. I know, because I used to be one of them.

Whereas some men are much more likely to ‘deal’ with or avoid a bad situation and then let it go. Sometimes this happens with such indecent haste, it resembles a military operation and what's gone before is effortlessly forgotten.

In the past I’ve always been the reasonable one when things have gone wrong. In short I used to be an accomplished, consummate doormat. The person who would rather quietly crumble then to voice her annoyance with a situation or a relationship.

In the past year, several of my friends have reflected on the changes I’ve made in the way I behave and handle things for the better. That voice that I’ve always had?Well now I actively use it. I'm a lot less stressed and hung up about the little things. I laugh at my own silliness and stupidity, because frankly sometimes I am a ridiculous drama queen.

I know I don’t have to accept somebody not treating me right. I don’t have to make do or settle with someone just because they show a passing interest in me, if I don’t chose to and more importantly if I know they are not suited to me.

The chip on the shoulder I had about my education I addressed by getting my degree. The crying fits I used to have if a potential relationship went wrong, have now been replaced by saying what’s on my mind and then moving on.

The hang-ups I’ve had about my body for as long as I can remember - I’ve parked, because the only person I was hurting was myself. I don’t need any additional baggage created by me. I’m happy, healthy and for the first time in a long time strong.….a firm believer in myself.

Do I still need to work on myself yes, every day, but don't we all? I already told you I'm not perfect! Do I talk about it in the blog - no. The blog is just my commentary, my opinion of things that have happened and how I in that moment have seen them.

So does my perceived lack of self mean that all of my ups and downs begin and end with me alone.….no VB that's where I have to disagree with you. I do take ownership of my faults and issues, but it doesn’t mean that I won’t find somebody, even "The One", who will take me on warts and all !

Do I know myself ….yes, I think I'm beginning to. It’s all there for me in the black and white of this text and my past entries. Some of which are so pathetic, bruised and self serving in their pity and self vanity that remembering what I was feeling than still hurts me. I almost want to shake myself sometimes.

Do I worry about not finding the one….no. I know myself well enough to know that settling just for the hell of it with someone who doesn’t get me, or will not challenge me or stimulate me isn’t for me.

If I’m alone for a while longer it won’t kill me, it just give me more time to work on me and love the one person that everyone needs to love before they can love anybody else…..themselves.

VB I take onboard what you have said and look forward to continuing my journey with you and ultimately proving you wrong. Weirdly enough with just one month of the year gone, its already turning out to be one hell of a whiteknuckle ride for me!

Let's see what happens next!


Anonymous said...

Dear Lara,

Thank you for responding to my comments, I had hoped you would. Please prove me wrong, as I said it would be shame for you not to get all that you want. VB

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