One of the most hurtful things F told me when we were together was that I was “always in my head, and never in my heart.” She’d follow this with ending a conversation, having sex with someone else against the rules of our relationship, or a torrent of judgemental things about me. That was her way of telling me I wasn’t emotional enough, that I didn’t feel. In her mind, feeling was superior to thoughts and logic, and because I was a planner, and wanted to talk out our issues instead of fighting about them, or worse yet (to me), ignoring them, I wasn’t good at relationships, that I wasn’t emotional enough, that I had no feelings.
I know now that this is bullshit. It’s true, for a long time after my father died, I did hide my feelings. I wrote a few years back about how I couldn’t cry, how it was only through a totally irrevelant conversation with K that I was able to finally break down and cry. I was so scared that if I showed myself crying, I’d be seen as weak, or worse yet, that I wouldn’t be able to stop crying, that everything I’d built up in my life, all my independence and stability woudl come tumbling down with my tears, and that I’d be back at step one.
However, I was beyond that point when I met F. I was an emotional person. I felt. I hurt. She hurt me. I felt hurt by hurt. And because I also have anxiety and a little OCD, which makes me a little more logical at times, she told me that I had no emotions, that I didn’t feel, that I didn’t have a right to ask for my needs to be met in our relationship because I wasn’t worth it, wasn’t worth having a relationship.
Now, if you asked Q if she thought I was more in my heart or in my head, more emotional or more logical, I have no doubt the answer would be the former of each of those choices. True, we joke about me being tender and delicate, but at times, it is true. From losing my father to losing multiple close friends throughout my life (some through death, some through their choice), I have a lot of fear and hurt inside me. Sometimes, so much that I don’t even believe I’m worth it, that I don’t believe I deserve to have someone as wonderful as Q in my life. Every now and then, something triggers me, and I burst into tears, convinced that this is the point where Q figures out that I’m a fraud, that I’m nothing, that I’m not worth it.
As I think back on my relationship with F, and how much she did that lead to me questioning myself, to feeling as though I wasn’t able to be part of a long term relationship, to believing that I wasn’t enough for anyone, I realize that perhaps she was looking inside at herself and expressing the worries that she had about her onto me. Doesn’t mean I feel any less fucked up, but I can only hope she didn’t do it out of malice, and that she just never allowed herself to see my tender side, my emotional side.
And more important, I thank my lucky stars every damn day that I met someone like Q, who gets me, who not only thinks I’m worth it, and thinks I’m more than enough, but is working on helping me to believe it too. Someone who will lie in bed holding me until the tears dry up, who will tell me again and again that she wants to be with me, and who will make me laugh by creating shadow puppets to pull Kinsey’s tail. I’m worth it, and she knows it. And she knows that I’m just as emotional as I am a planner, and that one does not exclude the other. How lucky am I?
-Essin’ Em1 comment