I don’t even know where to begin because I’m afraid this could come out all wrong. I’m afraid that people will read this and think ‘oh gah, who does she think she is?’ I’m afraid to start because I feel like it’s been building up for awhile now and I’m not sure that I’ll be able to neatly put it away.
The bottom line, I’m afraid.
It’s funny to see what divorce has done to me. What happens when your husband of 5 years walks out on you on your 5 year anniversary. I am not the same person. Some may say that’s a good thing, others might disagree.
I’m not sure how I feel most days.
I can’t tell you how many people reach out to me about my confidence. I get compliments all the time on how I’ve grown into myself. How I’m ‘more gorgeous than ever’. How I’m ‘so put together’.
And on one hand, I know what they say is true.
I want to look good. I want to feel good. For years I didn’t. I neglected myself. I was unhappy. I could sit here and blame my ex husband for all of my unhappiness, but I was the one who made the choice to neglect.
It was just as much me as it was him.
Sometimes I don’t know why I get all dolled up. Actually, that’s a lie. I know. I do it to pretend. Maybe to even convince myself that I’m going to be okay. That I’ve got everything under control.
If I look pretty and I look happy then I must be, right?
But the truth is, I’m not always. Most days I’m a mess because I never expected to get divorced. I never expected to be left. I never expected to have to start over.
So not only do I have no idea what I’m doing most days, but that’s not even the crazy part. I have no idea what it means to be pretty and put together.
It’s a completely different world. And I’m not saying these things because I am looking for you to tell me I’ve always been beautiful or anything else, but I’m telling you because I am completely lost.
You see, while I may look like I have it all together, I don’t. Not even close.
Underneath all of this, is still the girl who has always been. The nerd. The goody goody. The girl who falls too hard and probably too fast. The girl who was always just a little bigger than everyone else. The girl who desperately just wanted to fit in. The girl who pretended to be different just so she could hide all of her insecurities.
She’s still there.
And she’s still doing her best to hide all of her insecurities.
She still isn’t sure what to do when she gets attention. She still falls too hard and too fast.
And I think it throws people off. I think people expect that I’m good and I’m not. Not always. Not even most of the time.
I think they are unsure when they learn that I’m just as insecure, if not more insecure, than I was before. I’m fragile. I’m broken. I’m good at pretending. I’m good at smiling and nodding and doing my best not to make anyone else uncomfortable.
But I still want more.
Don’t even get me started on guys. I don’t want to be the way guys treat me, now that I look better. I’m not taken seriously anymore. I’m treated like the dumb, pretty girl. The poor girl who’s husband left her. The girl who is just nice to look at, but who shouldn’t open her mouth. The girl they want to take to bed, but not the girl they want to fall in love with. Or even talk to, really.
And no, I’m not looking to fall in love now, still technically married, but I want to be more than what they’ve decided I am.
The catch, I should be happier. I should feel better about myself, but like always, I let them tell me how I should feel.
I’ve always let them tell me how I should feel.
And honestly, it’s exactly the same way he made me feel when we were married. I was never good enough.
There was always something wrong with me.
Funny, how so many things can change, and yet, you’re still standing in the same place. Might look different at first, but you eventually realize it’s all the same.
Nothing ever changed.
So how do you change things? I have an idea that you have to love yourself. I don’t know that I do. I don’t know how to love myself. I don’t even know where to begin.
“To love oneself is the beginning of a lifelong romance.” Oscar Wilde
I’ve tried. But even in the relationship with myself, I’m still the quiet voice. No matter how many times I stand face to face with myself reminding myself that I am worthy, I can still hear all the times someone said I wasn’t.
I thought that by taking care of myself, by putting my best foot forward, that it would just happen, I would love myself. And yes, I do love the way I look now. I love what I do. I am proud of myself, but it still isn’t enough to undo all that’s been done. I’m still looking for someone else to tell me that I am enough.
I’m still that girl.
And while I know what most of you will say. While you will remind me that He loves me and that He has deemed me worthy, I just can’t find it in me to believe it. Not today.
Today, I’m just that girl.