I want to be loved as I am.
Flawed. Very flawed. I don’t think that is too much to ask, right?
I used to think I had to try and fix all that I believed was wrong with me. Or for that matter, anything anyone else suggested as my huge problem would require deep analysis. I was trying so hard to be good enough so that love could truly walk in my door.
I was a super-fixer upper!
Why was I trying to find something wrong with me? What self-help book would reveal the “A-ha moment” showing my fatal flaw, so that I could wipe it clean? Then I would be worthy of love and happiness. If I could just have found it, then I could have solved it all and my life would work.
I am a problem solver by nature. And well, I am also equipped with a wicked sense of humor. So, if I couldn’t solve it, I could laugh at it (which could create a whole new set of problems).
The difficulty with my Jerry Lewis/Sherlock Holmes shtick was I would over-solve my issues or make funnies of my dire pain to make everything okay for the rest of the world. I would then follow up and correct characteristics that would expose any flaw.
I spent years, and I mean years, believing if I could just find the loose screw falling out of the joint then all would be well. All this crazy making came back to my fear of not being loved.
I had excellent balance for all the eggshells I danced upon for years. I did not want to piss anyone off or egads! They may have stopped talking to me or decided all of my numerous flaws were too much. It was a horrible fear to live with as a burden for most of my life.
I was a people pleasing, flawed, problem-solver. I was my own best crossword puzzle.
Thank the glory to the birds and the bees that as I have gotten older, the veil grew thinner as I sweat my way jumping through all those hoops, only to get to the other side and see how it really didn’t matter at all.
The realization was a release of my ego; there was no more vim and vigor to holding any painful stance, because my emotional baggage was more of a backpack. There was no more energy to force me to continue that old dance.
Love is love, you don’t have to do anything to have it, give it or live it!
I heard that so many times in my life, but the real meaning clicked on a very deep level. I just had to vacuum all the lint covering it first, and it was always there.
Translated meaning: I love everyone, but I love myself first and foremost. That means all of me; the parts I tried to erase in the past, the days I still wake up and want to pull the covers over my head, and the moments where I feel lucky to be breathing sweet air.
I accept me: flawed, problem-solving goofball.
I spend very little of my time beating myself up (minutes, maybe hours, but definitely not days). I instead look in my heart to connect. When the head gets heavy, I look to my heart. Even in moments where I find myself traveling the old road for a moment, I remember that I am flawed beyond belief and that is okay. I cannot fix myself to suit anyone else, even me.
I find that the more I love myself, the more I forgive others when they are un-loving in actions or words toward me. That is so strange. Never have I found forgiveness so easy! Sometimes I pinch myself to make sure I am still me.
Just like my abdication from beating myself up, I have no desire to beat up or engage with anyone in a shitty fashion.
I am able to see the pain they carry and how they want to place blame on others to find justification as to why they feel so shitty. I know how hard it is to look in the mirror and take responsibility, but I also know the reward of doing so: love.
Nowadays, I have a right to my feelings even if someone else doesn’t agree. It is the most awesomely freeing feeling I have ever experienced, because I don’t worry anymore about being loved. I am flawed, you’re flawed, we’re all flawed, and we all deserve love.
No one has to justify what he or she thinks or feels, it just “is.” It is exhilarating to honor my own thoughts and emotions, even if they are out in left field or someone vehemently disagrees.
Love doesn’t end with a disagreement. Real love endures and creates more space.
There is no right or wrong in love only in the ego. Is real love there amidst the flaws, the issues and the pain? Or do you find it was all a house of cards and the word love was a pretense?
I found my old people-pleasing ways could hurt people. I figured, “Hey, I do enough for them, they’ll love me!” So, so, so not the case.
Do we choose to see it or do we find a million self-righteous reasons to stand apart, or stare at our flaws as an armor to allow deep connection, or shun someone, because if we lose our ground by engaging in honest conversation, what would be left of us?
Now, today, in this moment, I have a much better relationship by accepting my less than perfect attributes. This acceptance gave me trust of myself, and made it easier to speak up when the waters are calm, it actually prevents a tidal wave.
And to think, no one who really loves me ever gives a shit in terms of my flaws. They may though, roll their eyes at my sense of humor.
Editor: Jennifer Cusano/Kate Bartolotta
Tracy Crossley is a hyphenate: female, writer, curiosity quencher, artist, poet, gardener of real gardens and existential ones, clairvoyant, momma to grown ups, life coach and real, imperfect chick. Loves life, even days when she doesn’t like it and appreciate, appreciation for everything. Website: www.13degreez.com and Blog: 13degreez.wordpress.com