getting comfortable

by humanmama on January 16, 2014

I was talking to a friend about our high-school selves today. “When I was in the car with a date,” I remembered, “I was so conscious about how my thighs looked, all spread out on the car seat.” We both laughed about the fear, the restless anxiety that others were judging us that took over our thought in high school, and beyond.

That’s part of the reason I love being in my 30’s. And, I’m sure I’ll be having the same conversation with you when I’m in my 60’s. It’s not that I’ve gotten lazier, or am too tied up with all the stuff that I have to do to notice how I’ve stopped caring about my hair and makeup (let alone thigh-spread). It’s just that I know what I need to do every day, now, and it often doesn’t mean do hair and makeup. it often means get kids ready. Make dinner. Laugh with someone. Spread joy. And now if my hair is scraggly and up in a ponytail, I really don’t mind what other people think about it. It just is.

Someone today said, “I like being in my 30’s because I’m not supposed to be what people are in their 20’s.” And if you can ignore Hollywood (and I dearly hope that you can), it’s very true. At 30, you’re not supposed to be 20. Neither at 40, 50, 60… If you looked and acted like you were 20 when you were 70, it would be extremely disturbing.

So here’s my thought for you today: be what you are. A lot of people tell me I talk a lot, and it’s true. I do. It’s sort of like telling someone who is very tall, “You’re very tall.” I talk quite a bit. And I have a shame about it, so when someone says “you’re very talkative” my checks get flushed, and I hang my head a bit, awkward, temporarily silent. But that’s the thing with being who I am: I decided this year that forevermore I’m going to either have to be less who I am or get comfortable with who I am, regardless of how other people feel about it. and you know what I decided? I guess I’m going to have to get comfortable. Besides, I love the feeling that I’m spreading joy to friends and strangers. And that’s hard for me to do silently.

(Besides, if you haven’t already figured this out, I’ll tell you a secret. A lot of people? Are only judging me because of how insecure they feel. Or even better not judging me but I only feel judged because of my insecurities. And I’m pretty sure that applies to you, too.)

So go, now. It’s almost the weekend. Go and get comfortable being yourself. Its probably my favorite part about you.

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