Tag Archives: insecurity


Sometimes I worry that my heart is going to overflow. 
My best friend used to tell me that “a big front has a big back.”  It was his way of reminding me that, in both emotions and gravity, what goes up must come down.  But I’m starting to see the flip side.  For all the awful things I’ve seen, for all the hurt and confusion and helplessness, I’ve seen at least as much beauty in my lifetime.  In my memories, the beauty is almost blinding.  Even the bittersweet seems to become sweeter and less bitter over the years.  Things I swore would be important simply aren’t, and the joy in my life is made up of surprises I never even suspected.  
I can wax poetic until the reassembly of the bovine line.  I’ve always been good at making grand, sweeping statements and over-generalizing.  I mix up my tenses (in both English and Spanish) and switch between octaves over the course of a song.  I spend so much time teetering on the sharp edge between black and white, the shades of gray fog my vision.  If worrying were an Olympic Sport, I’d be a professional.  
It’s strange the way the realization that you have something worth protecting can fill a person’s heart with fear.  And fear pollutes everything.  Where once you saw inspiration, now you wilt in the presence of greatness like a sunflower in the shade.  Under a bushel seems like the only proper place to keep one’s light.  Do I even dare to exist in a world where there is so much beauty, so much talent, so much courage?  What gifts have I brought?
I’m not trying to save the world anymore; I’ve long since learned we can only save ourselves.  But faith is hard to come by. 
I think of all the trivial dating advice that’s passed through my ears over the years: that you shouldn’t love someone more than they love you; that you don’t want to be easy to “conquer” lest you become boring; that you must cultivate an aura of mystery.  I remember one of my exes telling me that people prefer to be around happy people, so I should just fake it if I’m not feeling it at the moment.  It all makes me want to gag.  I prefer to save the acting for the stage.  All I want to do is Love More– to leave things better than I found them.  It sounds easier than it’s been.  I don’t have an endless well of Love to go to, my joy isn’t contagious.  Perhaps there’s a hole in my bucket?  I smile more than I used to, much more, and it makes a difference.  Still, I’m told I’m “intimidating” and hard to approach.  Not by my coworkers, though, they all know me well enough to see the doormat within.  
How do I fill this bucket, I wonder? How I combat all the negativity, the insecurity, the worry? How do I drown it in Love?
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Sometimes I can’t help feeling wildly jealous of my coupled friends.  It’s not that being single doesn’t have it’s benefits, it’s certainly easier to make big life decisions when there’s only one set of needs to consider, but being single is such a constant for me, it’s easy for those “benefits” to pale in comparison to the benefits one gets from being in a couple.

And this is where the insecurity swoops in.  In and of myself, I’m fine.  I know that singledom is my natural state, that I spend a lot of time (maybe even too much) being introspective, and there’s nothing wrong with that–I’m just a specialty flavor.

But then I look around, and I can’t help wondering, “Am I just doing it wrong?”

Ironically, despite having many heterosexual coupled friends who, by nature of the laws in this country, already have more privileges than a committed homosexual/queer couple will, the jealousy I feel towards them is minimal.  It tends to be my other queer friends that turn me into a big, green monster–and not a cool one like The Hulk.  Logically, I understand that my hetero friends are pulling from a different pool than I am, which is much bigger than the pool of people I have to choose from. The sense of competition is much lessened, there.  But with my queer friends, it’s quickly becomes a question of, “Well, they figured it out and found someone, so why the hell can’t I seem to?” This line of thinking is both emotional in nature and inherently problematic.

So I could sit here and lecture you on how comparing relationships or relationship statuses is about as helpful as comparing trauma histories (that is, completely unhelpful and unnecessarily hurtful), but the truth is I do it knowing full well it’s stupid.  Some emotional reactions just do not heed logic.

One part of the problem is that queer communities are often so small, the longer you stay in one, the more likely you are to end up dating an ex’s ex, or in the case of poly relationships, find you and a friend are dating the same person.

But much of it is generic, “What the hell is wrong with me?” queries.  For example, I have a friend who came out relatively recently.  She’s a fabulous girl, so I can’t say I’m really surprised that she found a seemingly perfect match within a couple of months.  They’ve been together over a year now and they’re still so adorable you think you’re going to start vomiting kittens and rainbows around them.  Meanwhile, I’ve been out more than six years now and of all the people I’ve dated, not a single one has fallen in love with me (I can’t say the same was true on my end).  Granted, my friend is older than me and hence has more life experience, and I’m sure being a sexy, curvaceous femme doesn’t hurt.  But still, there’s that nagging question.

I wish I could even say she was an outlier.  But I’ve seen that happen a lot– gal comes out, finds her partner almost immediately, and commences with the domestic bliss.  The u-haul jokes are sometimes terrifyingly accurate. I’ve never even lived with someone in a romantic capacity! And not for lack of want or curiosity. My father, who’s a lot like me, recently revealed to me that he had never lived with anyone, romantically, before he met my mother.  This made me feel better for a moment.  Then I remembered he was 36 when he met my mother, and I felt worse.

I guess I just need to be patient.

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