Friday, March 23, 2012

Who I Think You Want Me To Be

Be Weird, Be Random

When I saw this, it hit me so hard in my heart that I nearly cried.

If there is one thing I'm really good at, it's changing myself into being who I think you want me to be.  I have taken 1 Corinthians 9:22 ("...I have become all things to all people...") to such absurd unhealthy levels, it's crazy.  There are so many versions of me running around, due to changing myself to fit the anticipated expectations of all the different people in my life, that I can hardly keep them all straight.

You haven't asked me to do this.  I know this in my head.  But my sane wise head is no match for the voice inside that says "If you want to be liked at all, you can't show the you that you are." And so I always end up tweaking myself one way when I talk to one person, and tweaking myself another way when I talk to this person over hear, and tweaking myself yet another way when I'm with that person over that way.

As I sit here and look at the words on that picture at the top of my screen, I admit to myself that it scares me to be me... to be JUST me. I've been hurt before. Tweaking myself to be who I think you want protects me from you hurting the me I am, or at least that's what I tell myself it does. But it also scares me because I try to be honest with myself about my faults. (Well, okay, I'm probably far better about admitting and obsessing over my faults than I am at seeing my strengths... and therein likes the likely problem.)  But I know I'm not that great. I know there are things about me that I don't like all that much.  So... if I allow myself to be the person I hide, if I show that person to you, I'm pretty sure you're going to not-like those things about me, too.

But, too, I know that allowing myself to be that person is a great freedom, if I was only willing to take the risk and embrace it.  I'm lucky to have a few people in my life who have ignored all the versions of myself I throw around.  They've picked their way through the maze of masks and crawled underneath the ones I hold closest and tightest, and they sit with me and hold my hand and say "It's okay."

I think that I don't make it easy to be my friend.  I'm sorry that I'm afraid.



7 comments:

  1. Oh, I'm sending virtual *HUGS* to you right now. It can be so hard to be YOU and be confident in who you are and who God made you. One of my favorite Bible verses is Zephaniah 3:17--it talks about God loving us so much he rejoices over us with singing. I always was so encouraged by that because I was made to be ME and no one else can do that. But I'm also very much a people pleaser, and I want everyone to be happy, and if I think I've hurt someone, I have a hard time forgiving myself. It's took a lot of people a lot of years to pull me out of that protective shell, and sometimes I have moments where I still try to pull back into it, but for the most part, I've learned to be confident in who I am. I hope so much for you that you can be the YOU that only you can be--and I know it can be so terrifying, because you risk getting hurt that way. But I just want to tell you right now that you are awesome and beautiful just the way you are--without masks, without hiding, without any pretense.

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    1. I've been thinking all night about how to say Thank you. Well, okay, I slept a lot of that night, but the awake parts had thinking. :) A simple textual "Thank you" seems inadequate. If we were face to face, I could hold your hand across the table, and I could look you in the eyes, and you could see the sincerity with which I meant it... but it's hard to do that here.

      What you said made me cry... in a good way. So, it's at my barest and most sincere that I tell you Thank you very earnestly.

      And thank you for the song... I like Disney movies. ;) It is possible that I have an embarrassing number of songs from Barbie's The Princess and the Pauper on my music player.

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  2. P.S. Here's a song (done for a Disney movie, no less ;)) for you: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_WrH7LKQEHk

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  3. I think you make it VERY easy to be my friend, no matter which YOU is present!!...

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  4. It's so important to be yourself. People will like you for being you!

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  5. This above all to thy known self be true blah, blah blah I don't always find you easy to deal with but I find you worth the effort. >^,,^<

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