a girl meets girl story, pt. 2
// journal entry, may 23rd: forced connections
if I really think about it, I was about eleven when I started feeling like I was gay. some girls from my class where talking about boys and they asked me if I had a crush. I felt nervous about the question and thought they would think I was stupid for saying no. I said the first name that popped into my head. “yeah… I think Ray is cute”. Ray was this non-threatening kid that I used to hang out with sometimes during lunch. what made him memorable to me at the time was that when I started wearing glasses, he was the only one that didn’t look at me funny. looking back, I realize how important it’s always been for me to have something to connect with people – those small interactions. and how if you look hard enough, there’s always something. it took me a while to learn though, that some of those things aren’t enough to build a meaningful, long lasting connection – and that is fine. I was forcing myself to blend in with the girls and I was forcing myself to identify any boy I could relate to and make that a romantic tale.
this brings me to Elizabeth. I remember seeing her in school and there was this energy that I couldn’t explain. I asked over and over: do I want to be her or be with her? our interactions were always unbalanced – because I was trying to impress her. I would try to be whatever she wanted. I would look for bands she mentioned, people she admired. there was no exchange of knowledge or the details that made me who I was at the time or any vulnerability coming from her. both are necessary: the first implies communication and the second implies trust. we couldn’t share our fears. because I thought she was better than me. and whenever that was the case, any connection I would try would also fail. it’s like: you are sending this to the universe and the universe answers it with just the right amount of assholes. I couldn’t share my fears because I was ashamed of not being accepted; she couldn’t share her fears because I put her on a pedestal and that made her want to keep that image (which says something about her own needs and fears, but only now I can understand it).
I made this mistake a lot, with other girlfriends too. but since she was my first, I think about our relationship as a stepping point to whatever happened next. like she was the one that taught me this was love, when perhaps I should not be making her responsible and rather asking why and when I learned that behavior as love. I was fifteen and thought any resemblance to love would fix all my problems. but I was with a wrong definition of love and looking at the wrong places. during the last session, Rita asked me to start questioning my images of love and I just needed to start somewhere. of course there are the deep ones: what kind of imbalances are present in my parent’s relationship? what connections have I made that didn’t feel forced and why? when was the last time I felt comfortable with someone? do I allow myself to be open? what do I do to make me loved by myself? are there triggers that make me forget to put myself first? why are they difficult to overcome? what am I afraid of when I think love is a possibility? what is my definition of love? what does being loved feels like?
I hope to get closer to answering these questions day by day. I am allowing myself to find out while there is all this life happening around me. I have to keep reminding myself there is also all this life happening within me and how important it is to listen to it. I used to define myself as a very impatient person, but I am discovering that I am also calm. can I be both? I can be. I can be anxious and impatient with work; with interactions; with wanting to discover everything now; about finding meaning. but I can be calm about my own path; about forgiving myself; about learning what is important. I can be all. “I am large, I contain multitudes”.
listening while writing: