To the Man Who Will Eventually Love Me – Post #4

So, I do this writing thing from time to time and occasionally it comes out as what I can only explain as my sorry attempt at poetry. I had an amazing phone interview today with Bold Magazine (www.boldzine.com) and one of the unscripted topics we discussed revolved around dating. Let’s face it, dating is hard. No matter your age, size, color or gender, dating well, to put it mildly, just sucks. Navigating this weight loss thing is tough, but navigating my way towards love? Psh, that seems like an impossibility at times.

After my divorce back in 2015, I found that reentering the dating world was a nightmare. Most of the time the old cliche rang true: “Men only want one thing.” Other times though, men wanted to drop the big “L” bomb after only a few short dates. Luckily, the latter admittedly happened way less often, but those are the ones that creeped me out the most. But what I learned about myself post-divorce was a bit more unsettling than even the strangest of dating encounters.

First, let me preface this with one simple fact about divorce – Just like childhood, no one escapes a marriage unscathed. Even if you ended it as cordially as possible, there are still reasons it ended and there will inevitably be that proverbial “baggage” that gets left behind as you move forward in life. Most of my baggage resulted in a major lack of confidence and self-worth. Now, some of this I can easily blame on things outside of my marriage, but a number of toxic ideals I clung to were based on things that were uttered to me at one time or another throughout our almost 8 years together. Once it ended, I realized I had been playing these hurtful words on repeat and in surround-sound in my head since the moment they escaped his mouth. While I can say now my own behavior was equally inadmissible at many moments in our marriage, I can see now that this tendency to cling to negative comments not only led to the demise of my relationship, but also to the major collapse of my self-esteem.

In this poem, I highlight my struggles of feeling worthy of love and it chronicles my incessant desire to place unnecessary warning labels on my forehead that say “Buyer beware!” I wrote this in a time and place where I felt like “damaged goods” and truly unsure of whether or not all of my flaws left me capable of being loved. My hope today is to reach others who have ever felt the same way. I’m here to remind you (and myself) that you are not alone in the battle to find love – Both for yourself and from others. It is a battle I’m fighting every day and I can promise you it’s TOTALLY worth it.

 

Dear Man Who Will Eventually Love Me,
Hi there.
Where? Where do I start?
Well, my name is Chrissy.
And I guess the first thing you should know,
is that I am broken.
And when I say broken, I don’t mean that I’m a discounted, yardsale puzzle with a corner-piece missing.
I mean I am a weathered old window torn from a southern Baptist Church after a category five rips through its rafters.
I am, as I’ve so eloquently described myself,
a hot mess.
I think it’s only fair you should know that I have loved before.
Once for sure, maybe one other time after that.
Which I suppose begs the question, what is a maybe kind of love anyway?
Anyway.
Have you ever loved someone so flawed you lose yourself to their chaos?
I have.
I don’t know where my madness ended and his began.
Two bodies and lives tangled together.
We were a couple pairs of cheap headphones, jumbled in a single pocket full of resentment, bitterness and terrible choices.
So, I guess what I’m trying to say is I’ve made a few mistakes.
I’ve laid in the arms of another man, simply to feel desirable again.
I’ve drank to excess a time or two, grasping at razors hoping they were straws.
My insecurities know no bounds.
You should know that too.
I’ll silently beg you to tell me I’m beautiful, but my eyes will constantly whisper I’m OK.
And if I say that I’m OK, you should know that I am not OK.
And I don’t lie often. I despise liars.
But sometimes, my mouth speaks too soon.
It’s as if I’m trying to figure out what I’m really trying to say while the words are still falling off my tongue.
I’m sensitive.
Sometimes too little, but often far too much.
And I’ll ask you to hold me, sometimes multiple times a day.
Because I know what it feels like to lie in an empty bed, pulling a pillow close, aching to feel something other than alone.
And I am lonely.
Sometimes I’m lonely in a crowded room.
It’s the kind of lonely that creeps in at 2am and screams obscene reminders in my ear about that one time Marie “so-and-so” from sophomore year wondered a bit too loudly how your parents could possibly ever let you get
that
fat.
Yeah, you should know I’ve got demons.
I can’t even pretend we don’t know each other well.
I built a fort out of all those insecurities,
tacked some low standards on the the walls and
taped it all together with secondhand band-aids.
The accommodations in there are deplorable, but I guess it didn’t stop them from moving in.
I’ve posted eviction notices time and time again,
but it seems they mostly just sit there, laughing in my face,
drinking from my half-empty glass
and giving me excuses why it’s me that really needs them!
But, I guess if you really do love me, you’ll just have to learn to live with them too.
Or maybe you won’t.
I can’t blame you. They’re assholes anyway.
Anyway.
I guess I should also mention I’m sort of afraid of everything.
Well, mostly everything.
Because I’m not afraid of the dark and I don’t mind squishing a spider or two.
But let you see me?
Really see me,
In all my nakedness and vulnerability?
Those are the kinds of thoughts that beg me to sleep through day just to numb the ache, but then keep me and my midnight demons company while I wrestle the cold spots under the sheets on countless hollow nights.
So, I write this to you as a warning.
I’m an enigma, dipped in complication and hastily gift-wrapped in pure-fucking-delight.
I don’t know what’s wrong with you, because obviously you’re clinically insane.
But know this –
I make an excellent little spoon.
I’m a pretty cheap date.
And I’ll have a hard time remembering your birthday too.
So, man who will eventually love me,
Yeah, I’m broken.
But these broken pieces will always choose love.
Love,
Me

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