Well, That Was Embarrassing

Don't look at my hoo-hah!

“You grow up the day you have your first real laugh, at yourself.” -Ethel Barrymore

     I still hate multiple choice problems.

But not because I compare them with my life.

I was trucking home in my trusty silver Ford Escort one Friday afternoon.  Thunderstorms were pummeling my small town as if they had a previous beef with all the bean fields and unfinished business with the hobby farms.  The sky was the color of my right eye when I ran into a cart while catapulting myself into Toys R Us when I was seven; a dark, fierce blue like a fearless ocean.

While death-gripping my steering wheel at 9:00 and 2:00, I saw something through the rain pellets.  Up in the distance, coming closer and closer.  Closer.  A little closer.  There. A patch of fresh white flowers.  For me, I felt a rare occasion where I would spot a patch up flowers under the rain.  Usually, when it was raining, I was tucked inside, hiding from the storm.  When I drive, I focus my attention to one focal point; five feet in front of me, praying the hydroplane God’s take me home, reciting ‘Jesus Take the Wheel’ in my head over and over again.

Flowers are brighter in the rain.  Their petals are prominent and clear.  When I hide from the storm, or focus too hard on getting out of it alive, I never find time to appreciate the velvet texture of a rain-kissed flower and the heightened pungency of their colors; the beauty and the true realness of happy and hopeful elements.  I don’t want to hide from that storm.  No matter how painful it is; how dangerous, I want to come out on the other end and seek the prettiest, most sacred part of the rough.  If the wind blows the branches off, the water floods my streets, the hail punctures my roof; I want to always find the flowers. I want to find that patch of flowers in my soul on a rainy day.  Beauty within is easy to see. I want to loosen my grip on the steering wheel, lighten up on the gas, and ride it out. Beauty within is easy to control.   It’s easier than I could ever think.  I hate the phrase, ‘when it rains it pours.’  When it rains, it only pours if I let it.  When it rains, the good stuff is even easier to see.

Taylor Swift once wisely stated; “it was easier in my firefly catching days.”  And girlfriend, I’m with you whole heartedly on that one.  When I was a little whipper snapper, poking holes in a jar so my latest creature, withheld from freedom, could breathe was far more important than trying to figure out who I was as a person I didn’t care about anything else in the world.

In my twenties, life was as unstable as an afternoon getting Starbucks with Britney Spears.  I couldn’t figure out if I enjoyed the company of my boobs, because all guys did when the saw them, was hurt them.  And when I wore a NorthFace; they made me look six months pregnant.  I struggled with my curves; swearing off Thomas English Muffins with cascading rivers of butter whenever I watched the Victoria’s Secret Christmas Special.  I embraced my curves when I sat down with Subway to watch Biggest Loser.

Who did I want to be? I would constantly ask myself this; in fear if I didn’t define it soon – I wouldn’t find someone who knew I loved myself; and therefore loved me for me.

I tried desperately to be mysterious for boys.  After all, Cosmopolitan had been spending countless years telling me to never call him, don’t send him that message back on Facebook, and for the love of God don’t give him eye contact for more than three seconds and look down at the floor woman!  I was constantly attacked by questions; should I be more mysterious? Do I need to text sexier? WHAT EMOTICON DO I USE?  In college, I may as well have majored in over-analyzation and minored in stressed-out-dumbass.  Good God, I wasted tons of emotional energy and valuable time when I could have been working my thigh master with dreaming up crazy scenarios and coming up with totally pointless conspiracy theories with my dating life.  With men, I would constantly go back to the same guys – because I used them to define who I was.  If he was funny, so was I.  If he was a mysterious asshole, so was I for dating him.  If he treated his Charmin roll better than me, I negotiated with myself I was powerful enough to change him.

Something I hated worse about toying with who I was; was my personality.  No, contrary to popular belief since that last sentence; I was not bipolar.  I just couldn’t figure out if I wanted to be one of those saucy bitches that stood up for myself like in Mean Girls, be an innocent little prude, detailed joyful blonde like Taylor Swift, if I wanted to be mysterious and witty, or one of those naturally inclined guy’s girl’s.  I would often attack media outlets (i.e. meaningful ones, like US Weekly, People, and W) to really seek the puzzle piece I wanted to fit into as a person.  It was easy, especially when I was whipping my hair on the elliptical: “Should I be cutesy like Kelly Pickler, or a huge corky freak like Megan Fox?”  I didn’t notice it sometimes, the defining I did while I observed other people.  The only good part about all of this confusion was the freedom I obtained to do all the defining.

All and all; my worries could be summed up by a simple equation to everyone’s answers.   Throughout the years, I found I didn’t need to be so caught up in defining myself.  All I needed to do is love who I was.  I know it sounds more cliché than an episode of Biggest Loser when somebody cries and slips on their tears while working the treadmill at speed two.  But why give myself a headache and a ball bust to figure out who I am?  When I loved who I’ve become, and accept it – that’s when all the answers are right in front of me.

I’m not a mysterious person.  I’m not going to be that girl who arrives thirty minutes late to a date with my future husband in hopes he finds my “mystery” appealing and wonderful; or try to let him and the definition of myself fall conveniently into my lap. Most importantly, I’m not going to hurt myself trying to become a clone of Ambiguity Barbie, manipulating myself into a frenzy just to seem ‘off the radar’ and ‘slightly unavailable.’    I hate Dave Matthews Band and that doesn’t mean I hate baby puppies, and everything that’s truly right with this world.  I’m nice, and I always will be – except when someone say’s something raunchy about my family.  That’s usually the only condition.  Sometimes I’ll get walked all over for being nice, and one day I’ll figure out how to learn to ignore that.  I’m not a bitch, and I don’t have sociopath issues like Megan Fox.  I will always be lusciously curvy and yummy.  My tits are so huge I debate sending them a postcard from my collarbone every day.  I wouldn’t have it any other way.

If there was any advice I could give; it is to be yourself.  Look where it got Kim Kardashian.  If you’re a slut, get out there and debut your bush to millions over YouTube.  If you’re a sweet, innocent girl, go take some pictures with lambs and get married when you’re seventeen (preferably to a military man).  If you’re a dreamer, invest in a friend that’s never going to leave your side; a guitar, a pen, or a g-string.  When you’re content with whom you are, everything will come your way.  Seriously, I found an unclaimed InStyle magazine the other day on the plane after embracing who I was for none less than five minutes.

Being myself can be tough.  Only because being myself is more than just finding myself.  I have the power to create myself.  That’s why it’s harder when I’m young, twenty, fresh.  In the whirlwind that’s creating who I want to be, I often wait for it to fall in my lap, or “get lucky” by filling in the correct answer.  Life doesn’t have to be a multiple choice problem, where I need to scramble to write down the right answer, the right me, before time runs out.  I have the power to write my own problems, and their answers.  Life is more than a multiple choice problem.  It’s a movie real.  And no matter how many takes I need to make motion picture perfect, it’s my movie, bitches.

If it’s anything I learn from life, I hope it’s about who I am.  And if it’s anything I love, I hope it’s the person I’ve become.

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University of Saint Thomas graduate. Minnesota-bred and happy to talk about the weather any time you’d like! Strongly believes any situation can be bettered by a slice of generously buttered toast or Phil Dunphy. Would get arrested to touch Justin Timberlake’s face. Always trying to be a better person by not wishing horrible karma on people driving slow in the fast lane. Hear more: @twitter @instagram


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