There was a time in my life when the idea of anyone knowing that I am flawed and imperfect, completely freaked me out. I have a distinct memory of being with a friend who told me that I was probably his most together friend. At the time I had a good job, a nice car and a solid relationship. I remember being so fearful that he might find out the truth: I felt like a complete idiot much of the time at my job, the car was something I bought because I thought it would make me feel a certain way, and my partner hadn’t been intimate with me in well over a year.
So I kept pretending for a little while longer. The fear was too powerful at that time. Never in a million years did I think that I’d still be loved if people knew the truth. Spoiler alert: that friend is still someone very close to me.
At a certain point, the pain became greater than the fear and I started making changes. Some were big (I left that old relationship and cut my hair very short for the first time) and some were small (I started reading different kinds of things, opening up more to people and learning how to be alone).
Looking back now, I can see that the changes I was making fall into 2 categories: courage and vulnerability. For the first time I let people see that things weren’t perfect, and in fact they were far from it. It was a scary thing to do and it took a lot of courage; but something in me knew that I had to change.
If I could tell talk to that younger version of myself, the version who was making those changes and was still so incredibly scared, I’d tell her 2 things: keep going, and definitely get the cat.
In memory of my sweet kittyboy, who came into my life as one of those many changes, almost 15 years ago, and who we lost on Saturday 4/29/17. Thank you for being with me through it all.