“I was always too much for people, and, of course, now I realize that I wasn’t too much for people, it’s just that people are too little for themselves.”
i’ve been making myself “small” since kindergarten. with the assistance of a couple friends in college who served as role models, i experimented with letting myself be as big as i am. life exponentially expanded for more than a year. i had a couple of friends i could trust, a gorgeous girlfriend, a full-ride scholarship, and a 4.0 grade point average (maintained as i hallucinated on mushrooms while acing my final exams). but then one of those friends was date-raped and didn’t return to school the next semester and my girlfriend broke up with me while spitting devastating judgments at me and i shrunk back into smallness again. a few times during my mid to late 20’s i tried to let myself be a little bigger, but collapsed into smallness every time i felt hurt or defensive. in my 30’s i performed relationship acrobatics, compromising my most prominent big-full-goodness into smaller square-ish misrepresentations of who i am because more than anything i wanted to prove to them and to myself that i was worthy of their love. i’d like to think that i’m finished with that madness, but i still find crumbs of self-hate when i keep my mouth shut and don’t say what i think and don’t ask for what i want and ignore what i need.
i’d like to be more now. the more i’d like to be wears a flowy dress one day and short-shorts and a tank top the next day and buys flowers for herself and maybe buys a house just so i can have a yard for a garden. the more i’d like to be writes more fiction and fewer “true” stories because deeper truths can be revealed in fiction than in the carefully crafted truths we recite. the more i’d like to be doesn’t save the good crystal, expensive candles, or sexiest lingerie for special occasions, but uses them on any random tuesday and replaces them when they break, burn, or rip from everyday wear. the more i’d like to be sips tea or tequila with slow savoring relish. the more i’d like to be takes my time licking my lips and pausing between each bite of whatever i’m eating, whether applesause or lobster. the more i’d like to be doesn’t rush to get ready to go out and doesn’t care if i’m late but doesn’t make other people wait for me. the more i’d like to be sings outloud anywhere and anytime i’m inspired. the more i’d like to be gives more kisses and hugs people longer and longer and longer and doesn’t let go until i’m ready. the more i’d like to be goes out alone to secret crowded places where nobody knows me and i shake my body exactly how it wants to move next to a group of boisterous 20-somethings too drunk, gay, and happy to notice me. the more i’d like to be frames my paintings and gives them away. the more i’d like to be talks too loud after three shots of tequila, lets my raunchiness be embraced by my enlightenment, says no when i don’t want to, and never makes excuses, rationalizations, or justifications for what i want. the more i want to be loves fearlessly without wanting or needing love in return, because the more i already am courageously loves myself more than anyone else ever could.