I can't count the number of times I have thought to myself, "Don't be crazy." I have constantly tried to come off as the calm, cool, collected one in my friend group, and am always comparing myself to others' self-described "crazy sh*t." But truth be told, I admire my friends' moments of "crazy." By letting people know how they really feel, they are being vulnerable and authentic. Too often have I sat in silence for fear of not wanting to come off as too sensitive and not in control of my own emotions.
I'm mostly talking about the silence I experience while trying to be the "cool girl" in a relationship. Navigating any new relationship, romantic or not is already stressful enough without constantly thinking that I may scare someone away by letting them know how I really feel. My chill persona is something that I've learned I participate in to protect myself from being vulnerable and thus, from being hurt or rejected.
In my defense, I have had some pretty lousy interactions with people after trying to be open and vulnerable. The threat of being told, "Your feelings don't matter" constantly haunts me--‘cause it’s happened before. It's not easy putting up my guard but it saves me from any type of hurt--all while not allowing me to connect honestly with others. Being open and vulnerable is only half of the fight for me. The other half comes from whoever is on the receiving end of those feelings. It doesn’t come naturally and it takes everything in me to be open. Vulnerability is such an amazing aspect of being human, but damn does it scare me.
I want to start being real about my feelings, about how I really am affected by others’ actions instead of pretending to not feel anything. No one is chill 100 percent of the time. I also want to come to terms with the idea that I'm not for everyone. If those around me can't handle my vulnerability or reject my feelings, it should be a sign to me that they are not for me and do not value me.
After getting to speak to so many amazing women here at MISSBISH, I’ve learned that they all share a common way of thinking. Be authentic and honest about who you are, and share your story with the world. I'm actively trying to be better about being open and figured that writing could be a perfect avenue to explore my newfound authenticity. I am going to open up about whatever I am dealing with once a week because let's be honest, that changes often. I am going to try my hardest to be vulnerable and to allow myself to feel. Let’s see how far I get.
Photo by: Donnel Barroso