Tag: love yourself

My Own Personal Essay on Heart Break (Nora Ephron Made Me Do It)

My Own Personal Essay on Heartbreak

(Nora Ephron Made Me Do It)

I set aside an hour and a half this evening to watch “Nora Ephron- Everything is Copy,” a fantastic film about the life and career of the one and only, Nora Ephron.  She has always been a role model of mine, but after viewing this film, even more so.  She constantly wrote herself- her pain, her joy, her anger- into her pieces, with no shame or pretense.  It takes an immense amount of humility to be so vulnerable in the public sphere.  Unlike Nora Ephron, I am anything but famous.  My vulnerability here is on a much smaller scale and yet it feels as though the world is watching.

After viewing this beautiful film, I took this evening to let the words, the pain, the fear, the tears, and the laughter too (for good measure) flow onto the page.  I took a cue from Nora and let everything be copy.

And so today I present to you, my own personal essay on heartbreak.  It is certainly no “Heartburn,” and while my writing may never be as nuanced and poignant as that of Nora, I can give it the old college try.

*****

What they don’t tell you about heartbreak is that it’s not just your heart that falls to pieces.  Every bit of you becomes fractured.  Your mind ceases to function in ways you once took for granted.  Your limbs don’t seem to work the way they should, after all- it shouldn’t possibly be this hard to drag myself out of bed, should it?

As a child, I imagined heartbreak as I saw it in my all-too-admired romantic comedies (many of those crafted by Nora).  I imagined it as a sharp, shooting pain that made you cry until your tear ducts refused to work anymore.  I imagined it as a debilitating weakness that made women double over at the sight of an old photograph and made men shed a solitary and stoic tear.  I imagined this pain to last for an agonizing… three to five minute montage.

Wrong.

So very, very wrong.  If only we could cycle through the tragedies of our life in a three to five minute montage and move forward.  Alas, life is funny in that three minutes can feel like a lifetime if you let it.

I can’t pretend to have the wisdom of a life well-lived.  I’m only twenty-eight and, Lord help me, I have much more learning to do.  What I can say is that I have learned so much from my first few relationships and in particular, my last.  My last relationship finally taught me what it is to have your heart shattered, only to spend months combing the floor for the remaining shards that might help build a good replica.  In other words, I finally understand what Shawn Mendes has been singing about endlessly on every radio station in America.

My story is relatively simple.  I made the mistake of falling for a younger guy.  (I can’t bring myself to use the word “man” because he was just too far from it).  I had been so resistant to dating him; adamant even.  It was my friends who convinced me to give him a chance, reminding me that age is just a number.  (Perhaps it is, but numbers can make a hell of a difference- ask the guy who was one number away from the Power Ball Jackpot).

He was a good guy, well-meaning and caring but far too inexperienced and selfish, which is to be expected with youth.  Hell, I was the same way at his age and I’m not being facetious- we were eerily similar. As we were together, I could see him making the EXACT same mistakes that I had made with my first boyfriend.  I watched and there was nothing I could do.  If I pointed it out, I was nagging- I was mothering.  The only way to learn it, is to live it.

I sat back and watched him slowly destroy our relationship as he let selfish needs and outside perspectives cloud his judgment.   I learned very quickly that his inner circle did not approve of me (and for someone who so desperately wishes to be liked, this was quite painful).  Much more painful was learning that HE did not approve of me.  It was a slow and agonizing revelation.  As time went on, it became more and more apparent that I could not live up to what he had hoped I would be.  I wasn’t athletic enough, outgoing enough, smart enough (a five year old would scoff at my math skills), or pretty enough.

I listened to him when he said that he wanted to marry me.  I believed him when he said that he wanted to marry me.  It wasn’t until he asked for an open relationship that it truly hit me.  Those words knocked the wind out of me and simultaneously made me sick to my stomach.  It was as though someone had punched me in the gut and stabbed me in the back all at once.  Now, I know that I may not be the easiest person to live with – but no one had ever made me feel so worthless before.  It was further proof that I just wasn’t…enough.

I listened to him when he told me that he knew we were meant to be together as soon as he saw me.  Then I listened when he told me that we “just didn’t have a good relationship.”

I listened when he said that he had “so badly wanted to marry me” before reminding me once again that we were just friends.

I listened.  I listened and I allowed him to take away whatever miniscule spec of esteem that I had left.

I knew better.  I saw the signs and I ignored them.  I was the older, more experienced of the two.  I should have known better and I have had a very difficult time forgiving myself for that.

All I wanted was to be appreciated, respected, and most of all- loved.  Don’t we all?  I have spent months, picking up the shattered pieces of my heart, learning to accept that not everyone will like you; not everyone will love you, not everyone will want you and that is OKAY.

That does not define who I am.  All I know is that his willingness to let me go, does not define my worth.  Despite the ease with which he was able to say goodbye, I have faith that one day- someone will appreciate me for the sarcastic, bitter, brilliant, and fantastic neurotic that I am.

Heartbreak, while excruciating and sometimes destructive, is such a wonderful gift of rebirth.  It allows us to see the world in new ways.  We do have one choice – make the most of our new superpower, or let it destroy us.  I choose the former.

And to my ex, I wish him all the happiness in the world.  May he and I both find the kind of love of which our dreams are made.

 

love yourself

Why I Need Plastic Surgery

I have come to a grand realization today.  Apparently, my face is displeasing to some people.  Largely because, and pardon the pun, my nose is too large.

This isn’t the first time that I’ve heard this.  Once, while I was working at Starbucks, I took a man’s order and he asked “Are you Italian?”  I politely answered yes (because I was being paid to be polite, dammit) and he smugly said “I can see that.  It’s the nose.”

Why thank you, sir.  I needed you to point out one of my largest, again pardon the pun, insecurities.

Now today, I started my day with a similar message from a lovely gentleman* on my online dating app.  I use the term “gentleman” facetiously as he was rather egregiously NOT a gentleman.

::Pause for applause while I congratulate myself on those big girl words that I managed to squeeze into one sentence.  And the fact that I just rhymed the crap out of pause and applause.  I am on a roll!::

I would like to share the interaction with you.  I will be using the following abbreviations:

MF- stands for Mother-Fucker AKA the bastard who felt he had the nerve to insult me without due cause.

BB- stands for Beautiful Bitch AKA me when I’m pissed off.

Keep in mind that this is how the conversation begins.

MF- Decent bod but not feeling the nose. U got anymore pics (THIS WAS HIS OPENING LINE)

BB- Congratulations! You’re the biggest scumbag of the day!  Thanks for the degrading comments to start my morning.  Much appreciated.  Have a great day!

MF- Just being honest (WHO ASKED YOU??)

MF- I don’t like weird shaped noses ginabear (Ginabear?  Wtf?  Are we cool now?)

MF- Its too masculine for me (SO WHY DID YOU MESSAGE ME AT ALL??? Also, there should be a damn apostrophe in “it’s”- you moron.)

MF- Ya dig? (I don’t dig. I’m not a fucking miner).

BB- So here’s an idea, don’t message me.

MF- Good idea.  Because I don’t appreciate your tone/nose (I don’t appreciate you pretending that being a dick is the same thing as being “honest.”  Honest is if I had asked for your opinion of my nose and received the same response.  What you did, sir, is just plain imbecilic, demeaning and RUDE).

Well folks, I suppose that’s it.  Clearly it’s time for me to get a nose job.  I’m just offending people left and right with my hideously “masculine,” “Italian” features.  If my face isn’t making men happy, clearly I have to change it.  Right?  That’s what society tells us, no?

If you’re not pretty enough, get some work done!  Boobs too small?  We’ve got silicone for that!  Nose too big?  We’ve got a scalpel for that!  Stomach too big?  We’ve got lipo for that!

Why the hell can’t we stop putting so much pressure on ourselves to look perfect?  You’re not perfect.  I’m not perfect.  MF is not even CLOSE to being perfect.  So let’s just work on loving who we are for more than what’s on the outside.  We are all going to age- things will start to sag, skin will wrinkle, hair will fall out and plenty of other stuff that I’m not ready to think about yet- but a good person will always be a good person.

So no, while I’m sure that a nose job would make me look better than I do now- my intention is not to change my looks (especially not because of a disgusting excuse for a man), but to change my attitude.

Don’t get me wrong, I highly doubt my sass is going anywhere- but my outlook on physical perfection has got to get the boot.

I am tired of hearing men tell me that I’m not fit enough or that my nose is too big or that my boobs are too small.  It’s my body!  If I like it, that’s all that matters.  If you don’t like it, there are a million fish in the sea, sweetheart.

Go fish.