wanting what we really want

I had a great conversation tonight with a new friend. Jessica is my co-teacher for my primary class and we got together for dessert to discuss strategy. She’s got the teaching expertise (high school teaching). I’ve got the kid knowledge (seven nieces and nephews). We’re a good team…but not really the point of this post.

Anyway, after working through the details of strategy, structure, and implementation for our little class (yeah…my job does leak into everything I do), we got down to girl talk. She got married young. I’m still single. She likes to hear my stories. I like to talk. It works.

She was asking me about the boy I’d been interested in the last time we talked boys. I couldn’t remember which one it was…so apparently, I’ve moved on. But I still had plenty to report.

While relaying these stories, I shared with her the recent epiphanies I’ve had as I’ve spent some time with some guys I would have never normally been interested in. There’s nothing wrong with these guys…they just aren’t necessarily part of my social scene. And maybe they’re not what I would ever imagine dating. But for some reason, I’ve been thrown into these situations that have lent themselves to continued interaction.

And all of these epiphanies have made me realize that I kind of like these guys. Sure, they aren’t the type I normally want (I was going to say “go after”, but let’s be honest…I don’t normally go after anyone), but there’s something about all of them that has made me realize that maybe I’ve been going after the wrong guys. As Patti likes to say, maybe my picker is broken. But admitting that maybe I actually like these types of guys…? Another issue.

And these have all been leading me to one thought. A thought that wouldn’t form, but it was there. A thought that Jessica articulated perfectly tonight. (I wish you could have seen my reaction when she spoke these words…it was almost comical. Small jump in my seat. Eyes widened. Sharp intake of breath. Hands moving as I struggled to contain the thoughts pushing their way from my brain to my mouth without any kind of order.)

“Wanting what we want is hard.”

Think about it. How often do we want what we think we should want? Or what we think others want?  Or what we think others want us to want? Or, or, or?

Wanting what we really want (and admitting it and owning it) is scary. At least for me. And this is what my recent experiences with these very unlikely boys has made me realize. I have been wanting what I thought I should want. I did the same thing when I was deciding what direction to go in b-school. I wanted to do marketing because I thought I should want to do marketing. It made sense. My dad understood it. I didn’t feel a need to justify my decision to anyone. But the reality was that I was terrified of going into marketing because it wasn’t what I was going to be happy doing, and truthfully, I would have sucked at it. But admitting that what I wanted was to go into HR…well, that wasn’t easy. And yet, once I did it, I was so much happier and it was so clear that that’s what I really wanted…and I have been successful so far because it’s a good fit for me.

The same seems to be true with boys…only I’ve been much slower to figure it out. But during the past month of my life, I have started to understand what I really want. (No confessions here…I’m not secretly dating anyone nor have I fallen for anyone, just been exposed to some new ideas in the dating arena…and by ideas, I mean boys that I’ve had to figure out how to wrap my head around.) And maybe, when I find this hypothetical guy, I will have to justify it to my friends or family because he isn’t going to be exactly what they will think I should want. And maybe it is a little scary because it’s not what I think I should want. But, so what? Is it tough to actually want what I want and let go of the images that I had created in my head of the person I thought I wanted to find? Of course. But can I tell that I’m going to be happier in the end by doing so? Absolutely.

And, as if that wasn’t enough fun for one evening, when I got home, in preparation for tomorrow’s concert which I will be attending, I downloaded Ian Axel’s new album, This Is the New Year, and the first song on the album is called “Leave Me Alone”. While the lyrics may sound slightly bitter, given the conversation I had just had, they were so in line with all of my thoughts. Isn’t it about being honest, after all? Honest with others, but more importantly, honest with ourselves.

Leave Me Alone

It’s not easy when you say that you’re sorry.
It’s not easy when you say you don’t love me at all.

Let’s be honest. You don’t care that you hurt me.
Let’s be honest. I don’t care that you’re lonely.

You don’t love me anymore.
You keep coming back for more.
If you don’t love me anymore, leave me alone.

We’re not dating. Who cares what your mom says?
We’re not dating. You can sleep in your own bed.

You don’t lovely me anymore.
You keep coming back for more.
If you don’t love me anymore, leave me alone.
Leave me alone.

Whatever I do, whatever I say, it doesn’t matter anyway.
You want me to move, you want me to stay, you won’t be happy either way.
Take all your s@#$. I’m over it.

It’s not easy. It’s not easy. It’s not easy. It’s not easy. It’s not easy.

You don’t lovely me anymore.
You keep coming back for more.
If you don’t love me anymore, leave me alone.
Leave me alone.
Leave me alone.
Leave alone.

3 thoughts on “wanting what we really want

  1. "Wanting what we want is hard." Yup. Good stuff! I agree – separating what I really want from what others want for me has been a long (but good!)(and still ongoing!) process.

  2. I was dating a really great guy and I asked him what kind of girl he saw himself with- what he said surprised me: "I try not to picture myself with any particular type of girl, because while I think I know what will make me happy, God really knows what will make me happy. If I was to have a type, God could put the right girl for me in front of my face, and I'd never give it a chance" That statement changed my life.

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