How to Deal With Niceness

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I’ve had two major romantic relationships in my life. One lasted over two years, but I was never verbally acknowledged as a “girlfriend” and I’m about 100000% sure I got fooled around on for one of those magical years. The second one didn’t even make the one year stretch but we did live together, got a cat together, unleashed the L-world, created an enormous “us versus them” lifestyle and basically emotionally damaged the shit out of each other.

I don’t want to claim that these guys are bad people, or that anyone I’ve casually or not-so-casually dated is a bad person. We just weren’t right for each other. Bad timing.

I know for a fact I am not the only girl who has a history of falling for guys who are just not good for them.  I have been on plenty of dates with nice clean guys who have a nice clean driving record and plenty of nice clean shirts. Why these types of guys have never appealed to me is a fucking mystery. I’ve seen and skimmed “He’s Just Not That Into You”, and the whole theory of liking guys that treat you like shit because your parents told you the mean boy that kicked sand in your face secretly likes you is intriguing, but I’m not sold on it. For one, my parents never told me that, and for another, it’s not that black and white. There is a world of difference between getting sand kicked in your face and being manipulated into driving a truck full of pain killers through the Sequoias (random example…or is it?). I want a bad boy with a sensitive side- sue me.

I know that some of my friends who are reading this don’t even know what I’m talking about. They have guys who support them and adore them and actually add them on Facebook. But there are some of us (I’d venture to say a lot of us) who CHOOSE men who just won’t give us the love we so desperately want.

Be it my dad issues, rescue mentality, or just straight up being a regular female– I’ve pretty much found a way to pick someone who just isn’t a good fit,  which has ultimately lead to the brick fortress that surrounds my heart today. Sad story, but I don’t think I would have created this blog without it.

So let’s just say…for the sake of a blog topic, that you find someone who is loving and kind and doesn’t bore you. Someone that you actually, truly, genuinely like back- that you don’t want to rescue, change, or control… what the fuck do you do? How do you stop being bitter and apprehensive and scared shit-less that something horrible is going to happen? How do you find the balance between all that you’ve worked to achieve and now, this?

How do you let someone in without losing yourself? How do you trust your journey?

I’ve recently made an effort to meditate (I know, I know). I’ve taken some guided meditation and breathing classes, and each one has left me more physically sick and anxiety ridden than the next. Understandably freaked out, I spoke to a couple of professionals about this, and they told me that it’s normal, that my body and heart are making space for all the delightful bliss to enter. Which means that I have to keep going, keep trying, so that I can rid the shitty stuff first. Bad things and bad dudes are GOING to happen. Your heart is going to hurt in unfathomable ways. I think it’s quite easy to get stuck in a place of hurt, and anger, and feeling unworthy. It’s easy to stay there.

I want to tell you that since starting this blog  I’ve completely gotten my shit together and now I know how to have a healthy, functioning relationship. I’d like even more to tell you that my yoga and writing career just took off and I’m this incredibly independent, empowered woman. Jesus I’d like to even tell you I’m a lesbian now. None of that’s true (sorry, ladies!). I’m on a slow moving train to a few of these objectives.

I’m feeling really happy these days. Really safe, too. But I’m scared that my hobbies will suffer, my work, this blog. I don’t want to lose it. The bigger part of me is hopeful. I think that my tiny little Grinch heart is finally ready for kindness. So I’m diving in, pulling the trigger.

Wish me luck?

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Barbie Girl

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Growing up, I was a completely basic little girl. I loved pink, purple, canopy beds, kittens, and of course, Barbie. I don’t remember when I first became introduced to the most glamorous plastic woman around, but I remember loving her. No birthday or Christmas list was complete without some type of Barbie or Barbie-related toy (she’s more than just a doll, you know). I would nearly pee my pants waiting for my dad to machete through all of the clamps, wrapping, and twist-ties that held my new friend hostage.

My best friend Steph will probably kill me for sharing this, but she and I played with our Barbies way past the standard age. We literally could not think of anything more fun than creating fictional scenarios for our diverse group of ladies.

I have read plenty of essays and seen tons of segments talking about how horrible it is that little girls play with Barbies. Barbie’s body type is apparently impossible to achieve and sets this unfair standard for young ladies at an early age. Barbie and Ken’s lack of “realistic genitalia” confuses kids. The list goes on and on.

While I agree that Barbie’s proportions are a little off, my only rebuttal is: seriously, who cares? She’s a toy. I don’t know anyone that wants to play with Cellulite Barbie or Midlife Crisis Barbie. She’s just fun to dress up! I think it is way worse to see an airbrushed, photo shopped human on the cover of a magazine.

Being a strong advocate for sexual education, I guess I can see why lack of a dong on Ken is kind of weird, but take it from someone who still has to shake off penis visions from the Body Exhibit, sometimes you just don’t want to see that shit. All I could think about was putting new, exciting clothes and shoes on Barbie. I don’t want a vagina getting in the way of accessorizing!

So what, am I somehow a bad female because I loved Barbie? I’d argue that Barbie has, in fact, been a positive contribution to the woman I am today. Sure I was gifted Barbies that came in a hot pink prom dress and that was rad, but you know which Barbie was my favorite? Vet Barbie. That bitch had a legit job! She came with a stethoscope! You can’t become a vet without going to college! While I enjoyed Barbies with dream jobs, Steph was a big fan of culturally diverse Barbies. Much like our girl group in life today, we loved white girls, black girls, Asian girls, whatever! Barbie doesn’t discriminate, and neither do we dammit.

One of the best gifts I ever got was the Barbie Volkswagen Beetle in a shining red. I would cruise Barbie all around town in her hard earned automobile (she saved up her Vet money) feeling independent and amazing. I knew one day that I, too would have a car like Barbie’s when I was old enough. Sure enough, however many years later, I am the proud owner of a Volkswagen Beetle (it’s silver, not red though. Bummer.)!

It took me a few years to realize that I never owned a Ken. I did get a John Smith doll (you know, from Pocahontas), but my brother ripped his legs off so I very rarely used him unless we were acting out a school shooting or paraplegic benefit. My best friend and I had created a world of strong, fabulous, tolerant, beautiful career women, free of men. Our dolls didn’t sit around bitching about getting dumped or worrying about STDs, they we’re having swim competitions in the pool, taking vacations at the beach, and trying out trendy haircuts by their stylist yours truly.

Sure Barbie has big hooters and small feet and wears too much pink, but so does that neighbor you secretly want to be best friends with. Barbie is a cool chick and I think we should all thank her for keeping her panties on and showing us how to change up your lifestyle whenever you feel like it! I am, and forever will be, a proud Barbie girl.

Forever Single

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I turned 25 recently, the same age my mother was when she gave birth to me. A quarter of a century: a blinding reminder of how far I’ve come and what I’ve not yet accomplished. My social media outlets are literally bloated with engagement, wedding, ring, baby, shower, etc. photos. I hate to be crass but, now that I’m 25, I’m noticing that my Facebook feed is packed with a bunch of shit I don’t care about. Or understand for that matter. And if it’s not wedding/birth related- it sure is couple-y. I know I sound like that girl who falls out of the window at the shitty Sex and the City party but, when (and why) did everybody pair off?

Trust me, this isn’t going to be another rant about how I “don’t get” marriage and about how kids are annoying; I think you get the picture. Today at work I was talking to my coworker who had just stumbled across her boyfriend’s Google history which (unfortunately) was not filled with a bunch of porn, but engagement rings. Yikes! Another coworker of mine, 35, told me she’s “ready to settle down” and is literally making that very clear to any guy on Tinder who returns a like.

My greedy lady loins recently sought after a dude who was currently tied up. He told me he and his live-in girlfriend were seeking out couples counseling to “deal with his issues” (AKA being attracted to me). They’ve barely been together two years. No one has ever looked more unattractive to me. Last time I checked couple’s counseling was for people who’ve been together WAY too long and this is their last hope before they decide who gets the sweet DVD collection.

My boss literally just met a girl a few minutes ago and immediately flew a few states over to spend a long weekend with her. When he returned he claimed it was the best three days of his life. Really pal?

All around me, people’s clocks are ticking. Everyone wants someone. Partners are a novelty, and you better grab one quick. Do you want my opinion? Obviously, since you’re reading this.

I think most couples, in particular couples my age, are a mess. It sure is convenient to toss all of your problems onto another person under a charade of happiness, but like T.Swift says, “bandaids don’t fix bullet holes”, DO THEY?! But seriously, I’ve been single for almost two years now, bouncing in and out of “relationships”, but, once I see them in my rear view mirror don’t really claim them as such. More like casualties in the battlefield of my twenties.

Being single actually forces me to look at all of my shit, and (gasp) deal with it myself. I don’t see a lot of that happening in 20-something couples. It’s a lot of expectations from another to fix you, help you, make you feel special. That’s quite temporary.

“Well what are you looking for?” my coworker asked me. My eyes glazed over in that way they always do when the topic of boys comes up,  but I was able to answer. I told her I just wanted someone to take me out for food and drinks, compliment me a bit, and then drop me off at home.

I stopped it there, the looks on the girls’ faces reminding me of how alone I really am in this world of pairs. The truth is, I want a lot of things. I just don’t expect to get them from one person. I don’t think that I can fit all the needs of another.

I want to come home, take my pants off, watch Kardashians and eat Cheez-Its straight out of the box without anyone bugging me about it. I want to have good sex and flip over and fall right to sleep after. I want cute texts when I’m in the mood for them, but not all the time. I don’t want to check in with anyone when I’m out late. I want to snuggle up and watch Parks and Recreation in comfy clothes and no make up, but then later I’ll want to go to a nice dinner and wear some eyeliner. I want someone who’s stoked to be around me. I want a dude who has his own life. I want to be swept off my feet but not be late to work the next morning. Sometimes I want one dude. Sometimes I want four (not at the same time). I want all of these dudes to only want me. I want support, friendship, devotion. I want freedom, space, and my individuality.

I have a favorite ice cream flavor, always have. It doesn’t mean I don’t sample as many flavors as possible before I commit to my purchase.

Sometimes I feel like those horses with blinders on; I can only see ahead of me, one step at a time. I can’t compare myself to anyone because I’m not those people. All you couples, you confuse the shit out of me, you really do. And for the rest of us lost, sort of single people, treading water, not really sure if we’re going to swim to the deep end or just walk out of pool and keep tanning- I think we’ll be just fine.