Trying Not to Judge Myself

So I get home from work and I have a chest cold that is intense. We’re talking room-shaking coughs that leave me tired and heady. So it’s a gorgeous spring day and instead of walking (can’t run with this cold) or maybe going grocery shopping, I settle into my couch and see who’s on gchat (my new lifeline) and check the two non-time sensitive emails that have arrived. One is bad news that a material I had hoped to use in my product I’m developing is too expensive (damn) and the other is basically spam.

It’s suddenly 6:30pm and my east-facing room is darkening. I make myself a little snack of triple cream cheese and water crackers and pour myself a nice little glass of wine from the bottle my roommate generously opened the night before. I’m trying to enjoy clips from Beverly Hills Housewives but the damn thing keeps switching to Atlanta Housewives and I’m wondering if I’m subconsciously racist and then I remind myself that I also don’t like New Jersey Housewives and feel better. I got sick of flipping back to BH and you know what, I like Nene. I like her style, I like what she has to say, and you know what else, Phaedra is CRAZY.

Clearly, not my proudest moment. Avoiding taxes and my AMEX statement, I pour myself another glass and make a nice little dinner of almond milk and granola. Back in my couch dent, I gchat my friend Lizzie, grab a drink? She’s out with her guy. I send out another invite to crickets. I settle deeper into the microfiber and down. What to do?

I create an online dating profile of course! I’m not sure what sort of situation that sparks most peoples’ drive to do this but I guess for me it’s buzzed at home on a Monday night in a dark room. Anyway, the profile creation has lead to several things. 1. Lots of emails that are now going directly to Bin. (this isn’t me being cool. I literally had like 30 in a couple of hours and couldn’t figure out how to send them to their own folder.) 2. The realization that I meet a lot of great guys in real life and need to alter my interior self to frigging connect with one of them. 3. That the aging process is real and 40 isn’t just a number! 4. And for the worse or better, this is what my personality assessment said:

“You are rather cautious about letting people know what you really think and believe; even your closest friends find it hard to know what your deepest feelings are. You keep your inner world to yourself. If you have weaknesses, they are YOUR weaknesses and you feel little need to let others in on them. If you have unpopular or unconventional beliefs, they are YOUR beliefs and you seldom feel a need to put them into the conversation.

To be sure, you’re not a closed book. You’ll talk about a lot of things you think and believe, and you’ll share personal details and opinions about a wide variety of subjects. But these are mostly the safe stuff, which don’t involve painful experiences or deep opinions or personal details that could potentially cause embarrassment later on. You can be quite candid on a more casual level. But when it comes to information you consider deeper and more personal, you generally like to keep it to yourself.

It’s safer this way. You learned somewhere – either from painful experience or intuition, or perhaps both – that being open can be a hard experience. Someone may think less of you, or criticize you, or some other unnecessary difficulty may result. So you don’t open up too often. What’s wrong with making it hard to be hurt?

Nothing. Who wants to be hurt? But if you’re hard to hurt you may also be hard to know. You know how to be kind, to lend your hand when someone is in need or share what you have when someone is in need. But that’s about sharing THINGS; it’s not about sharing yourself. Our question for you is about relationships; open and honest friendships. Does your style of keeping your emotional cards close to the chest, so to speak, make it difficult for you to experience the full range of intimacy? Intimacy is an experience inside us; it’s about being known, honestly and completely, and still being loved. So in protecting yourself from being hurt is it possible you’re also keeping yourself from being known and, to some extent, being loved?”

Oh, God. I miss facebooking and texting.

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