The comments I can finally put to rest:
“Be yourself, but not all at once.”
“Maybe don’t be so open about your unconventional liberal and feminist views, it might be hard to find a boyfriend let alone friends when you’re so out there.”
“You can’t show men how independent you are, they need to feel needed.”
“Don’t talk about your dreams and travels so much, people might think you’re just a play girl with no respectable goals.”
“No man is going to bring you home to meet his mother if you’re as all over the place as you are now, tone it down a bit if you want to be marriage material.”
I have spent years resisting advice that enter like darts- advice that convinces me acceptance and love comes only through hiding myself. I have kept bandages over my vulnerable skin in fear of more puncture wounds telling me my wild mild, my activist heart, and my wandering disposition are the reasons I am bound to be alone.
That is until he peeled back my lousy attempts at protection and loved me for the very things I was told by many I needed to change.
He showed me love does not have to feel like choking down vitamins, or like growing up. Love doesn’t mean buying house slippers and a permanent mailing address nor does it mean losing my last name along with my irrational dreams and fickle aspirations.
Him loving me for what many label my flaws is the most liberating feeling, and completely impossible not to reciprocate.
Art courtesy of: Our Friend Fluid Metal by Nancy Rubins