It took me a long time to scratch the surface of my own human psyche. I still haven’t yet fully learned what I do subconsciously for others or what I do consciously for myself. Even though I’ve yet to determine those contrasting variables, I can see with clarity that for the most part, I know myself. And I would never change who I am to meet another person’s standards. The other day my mom saw an old friend in the supermarket who said (insert compliment): “Your daughter is so smart.” (insert the backhanded follow up), “When she goes on dates she shouldn’t show boys how smart she is.”, Normally I would’ve gone on a whole rant about that ignorant comment. That it goes without saying, I should never withhold my thoughts and opinions because it might intimidate/emasculate a man. But for the first time I stayed calm. I'm not offended, the same way I'm not offended when my grandparents call being gay a disease. I understand that people from an older generation choose not to educate themselves on modern truisms. Try as I might, I can’t change how people wish others would conduct themselves. The only thing I can do is stay true to myself and conduct myself the way I choose to.
Up until recent years, (and even now), pop culture would cast beautiful female characters as the dumb role. Beauty and brains were two opposing traits, foreign to one another. Even now it’s lauded to be both beautiful and smart, as if it’s an unusual pairing. It shouldn't be unusual at all. In a recent podcast I listened to, celebrity stylist, Karen Welch, speaks about society rebuking her for going public about her political views. People become *weirdly* outraged when celebrities or stylists or bloggers speak out about politics because it’s not their place. I call bullshit. Karen responds acutely to haters by saying, “I’d rather my beliefs be who I am then what I style on people. It’s a funny balance though, for sure.” I haven’t fully accepted every part of myself (who actually does?) but my honesty and self-awareness has made me susceptible to the many different sides of my character. If we have the ability to feel a wide range of emotions-- sad and happy and angry and passionate-- and have accepted that human factor, why is it so absurd to think we can be bad and good and the grey area overlooked in between?
You can be sweet but also assertive. You can be both cute and sexy (I have a troubled relationship with the word cute because it makes me feel like a bite sized cupcake that can fit in your pocket, and naturally, I don’t always want to feel like a cream covered pastry.) That I can be for the most part liberal, besides for disagreeing with x,y, and z. That I can be extroverted (I love meeting new people and I’m normally very sociable) but can also be introverted (I like being by myself and having alone time). I’m trying to look at myself as ONE person despite my different complexities, in lieu of feeling like I’m a paradox with twenty people living different lives for me.
In an old Coffee and Bagel, Shelly touches on the topic of ‘Multiplicity,’ and explains that as humans we are allowed to start, say, a jewelry business and then decide to do something else. The same goes for character traits, we’re always evolving-- who’s to say there is one way to be?
Am I making any sense?
Do these sentiments relate to your life at all?
Is anyone listening or am I talking to myself? Bueller, bueller?