She had her routine, her friends, her schedule and structure which she loved. Her days were fairly predictable and once she settled into that comfort, everything changed.
They were talking more than usual one morning as she worked alongside him. She felt her skin warm and sparkle like glitter had taken the place of blood in her veins as he spoke.
His crystalline blue eyes were awfully beautiful.
She noticed the tone of his voice, the sound of his laughter more than she had previously. She studied his mannerisms, finding how he carried himself endearing. She watched his mouth as he spoke.
She thought about touching him. Trouble always followed thoughts about touching.
She wasn’t ready for these rapidly developing feelings. The uncomfortable addressing of her relationship and intimacy issues that only surfaced when she was involved with someone wasn’t high on her list of priorities. She was enjoying the calm, care-free surface of her life as it was.
Then here he was, splashing around, with his bright smile, effervescent gaze, possessing the energy to listen, to talk and share himself causing her to slip from the safety of her routine into the deep end of a pool she wasn’t sure she could swim in.
That was where the expansion was, where she was headed with him. She could float, tread, sink, explore and discover the parts of herself that never saw the light of day. He pointed at them, shining at the bottom of the pool, their glimmer catching her eye when she felt strong enough to glance in that direction.
She could resist, and ignore this development. She could switch her focus to something else, something less scary.
But what fun would that be? What would she be missing out on if she didn’t snatch his hand and run off into a forest of unknowns? Whatever they encountered, he would be with her, and if he bailed, well, she already knew how to be alone.
Relationships challenged her because she was caught between being the human she was and the plastic doll she learned to be. She was tangled in expectation that she should “be good”, reveal only palatable things and keep herself “presentable”.
She wasn’t to rock any boats if she was to hold on to him. She was to speak softly and not want anything. She was to have her hair in place, her dress buttoned, and keep her hands to herself.
This bucked against her craving to be fully alive and present with him. How was it possible to be with him if she was constantly suppressing herself? How could she tell him the truth of who she was if she was constantly grooming and polishing her exterior, her words, and quieting the ferociousness of her desire?
It was easier to avoid relationships altogether. She had gotten so good at picking the ones who fed the plastic doll part of her that she didn’t have a clue as to how to proceed as a real flesh and blood human being.
She decided that to start, she would talk. She would tell him everything.
He loosened the buttons on her dress so she could breathe as she spoke. He looked her in the eye, as she handed him her words. He shook out her perfect hair. He kissed the lipstick off her lips, and held both of her hands.
It was painful to be stripped of her armor, to allow herself to stand there and let him look at her, take in her words. She was done giving little acceptable parts of herself to test him and see if he’d stick around. She no longer had time for slipping Post-it notes of half-truths to him with eyes half closed.
With previous relationships she wanted to express what she felt, thought and wanted, but held back out of fear, of hoping he would say it first. She didn’t have to make herself vulnerable if she waited for him.
Waiting meant letting her words deteriorate inside of her. Waiting extinguished her fire, and forced her to give up her power, and heightened her expectations of him. If she had to be quiet, he better do his part and read her mind. She became restless, agitated, her thoughts burning her from the inside out.
This time she switched her focus off of him and returned to herself and what she wanted. She wanted this relationship to be one big let go and to express herself freely.
She let go of scripts, of conditions and expectations so she could love and be loved unconditionally.
She told him everything. She told him who she was. She let him know she was too much, too little, too crazy, too weird, too ravenous, and too loud.
And he loved her anyway.