´╗┐romanced: dream

A majority of us are raised in a society where we go to school, get a job, get married, have a family, and then our children continue that cycle. Where I am at currently in my life is post-going to school, but pre-getting a job or I am even further away from getting married; I have very little experience with relationships and romance in general. I only recently had my first relationship, and we agreed that the title was too… intense, and that we would prefer to stay as friends who date exclusively first, as we get to know each other better.

I am embarrassed to admit that I would actually want to be in a relationship. Not for the sake of being in one so that I am not single or to check part of another box off the unspoken to-do list of life, but more for the life experience that comes from it. Even if this relationship does not lead to marriage but rather ends sourly in a break-up, I don’t mind so long as I can learn something more about myself from the experience. Just being a part of the ride is enough to make me happy. To understand what it means to be somebody else’s significant other, while at the same time, being able to see a person as my own, it is important for me. I want to know that somebody out there who can make me feel and act that way exists.

The concept of love and relationships, it’s not something that can be approached logically. Maybe that’s one of the reasons why we as humans are always so fascinated by the idea. No matter what we try to find in somebody else as a mate, sometimes, our hearts may not always agree. Let’s say we want somebody who is tall, Caucasian, and muscular, but we end up in a relationship with somebody who is medium-height, African American, and scrawny. Yet, we are not un-attracted to the African American, despite them being not what we would prefer. And that is because of what they have to offer beneath the surface. While they do not physically resemble what we would want in an ideal mate, the personality and ethics of this African American appeals to us.

The concept of love has a lot of gray areas. For example, one might view a woman getting hit by her husband as domestic violence without any context. But what if the woman wanted her husband to hit her, because that was her kink? I’m not going to explore that idea more, because it is a very…awkward topic, but you get the idea. There are other emotions, primal, hormonal, and hard to understand in general, that cloud our judgement and make us act beyond reason and logic. Yet, that’s what makes being romanced such an exciting and terrifying journey. The unknown does not necessarily settle well with me, but being able to single out that special somebody out of the several millions of people in the world, it’s a wonderful feeling. And it’s a feeling that every human being deserves to have, or at least in the world of my featherlight dreams.

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insecurity: realization 37

For me, whenever I get competitive, it stemmed from insecurity or nervousness. I used that sort of “you’re going down!” attitude as a facade because I did not want others to realize how fearful or intimidated I was of them. But the big question here is, why am I so keen to compare myself to anybody else? Why could I never be happy with being just me? Looking at who I am now, I am perfectly happy with a lot of my qualities. I am upbeat, likable, silly, hardworking, and caring. I feel like I have hardly changed from when I was a kid, on the inside, anyways. I just tried my best to stay true to who I am and the values I stood by. But when I was faced with so many external factors, I found myself lost, strayed from the person I knew I was.

For me, being raised by Asian immigrant parents, that was probably the first part. Your “family friends” are just complete assholes who brag about their children’s accomplishments, and when you do not have anything accomplished because you are five years younger than them and can hardly speak English, then things get ugly. I still remember one of them saying that I was “unfixable and undisciplined” because I was acting like how almost any three year old would, in other words, rowdy and rambunctious. And because of that, my parents cracked the whip on me. Possibly literally. My earlier childhood is still a blur, but given my dad’s military background, getting hit was highly probable. Asian parents want to make each other feel like their children are inferior. And the trickle-down effect is that the children feel insecure.

When children feel insecure, they become competitive. I can say this form firsthand experience in high school. I had to deal with so many people who were in-your-face about their accomplishments. They wanted to intimidate you, because they felt insecure about themselves. Nobody can predict the future. No matter how much you have going for you, how self-assured you are, there will always be that seed of doubt lingering in the back of your conscience. The what-if’s and worst-case scenario’s. Unfortunately, these doubts are not ones you can really shake off. You can minimize them, but they always need to exist in some proportion, because they represent you being realistic and practical. If you never think about the worst-case scenario to a situation, you will find yourself in a very bad place mentally and emotionally should all hell break loose and it actually occurs. That being said, insecurity makes people come off as intense and competitive. A lot of it has to do with them being unable to lessen their doubts.

Whether your insecurity stems from the people you surround yourself with or the doubts you are unable to contain, the way you channel it should never be in such a way that others around you get harmed. Being competitive or intimidating to overcompensate for these doubts, it’s unhealthy and destructive. I speak from personal experience as both the harmfully competitive one and the one who was targeted by others. The question is, why did I need to get insecure? Why could I not love myself? A huge amount of it had to do with others doubting me, and it made me doubt myself. I let my environment get to me. But, in almost every case, you should never let other people tell you how to live your life. Nor should you ever let your life revolve around another person. I let that happen, and it caused my entire existence to become one of paranoia and anxiety. Always put yourself first. Love yourself for being who you are, and never get that validation from somebody else.