I went out with a guy last night and I cared whether he liked me or not. As a result, I was nervous.

My caring may have been because I already suspected I could easily really like him. I liked his profile online and definitely thought he was cute, and our conversation via online chat had been hilarious and smart. I was excited to meet him.

However, I’d had alcohol and far too much sugar the day before, and wasn’t feeling terribly awesome or confident. I’d had late afternoon caffeine so was a little amped. I am hormonal/emotional this week. And, I was hyper-aware that I’d painted my nails with a bright blue holo polish. It’s an unusual color for me and not everyone’s cup of tea.

In fact, I think the blue polish was on my mind so much that it was the cause of the inauthenticity that’s on my mind today. (It’s Zoya Dream, in case anyone’s curious.)

A side of me that I thought I’d left far in the past came out to play. She’s full of bravado and rather spiky. She hides her warmth and her softness, and her walls are high.

I thought those walls had come tumbling down a long time ago, but last night they suddenly reappeared. The “tough girl” persona I adopted through my teens and twenties was there in full force. I was surprised to see her and surprised by how complete and intense her takeover was.

Looking back on it today I’m deeply displeased. The man I was out with was sweet and emotionally available. My impression is that he doesn’t just wear his heart on his sleeve; it’s his entire outfit.

There’s something about him that makes me think of crawling into bed beside him and lying around for hours snuggling and telling each other our stories.

But we only sat together for an hour or so before he very suddenly and suspiciously realized he was late for something and needed to leave. He said he wanted to see me again and we hugged goodbye.

I’ve been out on very nice dates with a few different men by now. I’ll see each of them again soon.

With this guy that I saw last night, though, I actually care whether I hear from him and see him again. It’s rather nice, actually. Regardless of whether I do hear from him or not, it’s kind of nice to have these feelings.

Is it because of him or because I’m an unusually hormonal emotional mush right now? I don’t know. I suspect I’m feeling a little more emotionally open at the moment (this post is a damn good sign of it!).

I wasn’t my current self last night. I wasn’t my authentic self. If I don’t hear from him, I feel like I’ll know the reason why. If I do, and we see each other again, I’ll be glad to have an opportunity to introduce him to the real me, the current me. Somehow I feel she and he might be a good fit for each other.

[UPDATE: He messaged me and wants to get together again sometime. I’m only shaking and sweating and hyperventilating a teeny tiny little bit, which I see as a good thing.]


  1. I would invite you to not judge yourself for having those old patterns come to the surface. They are tools you developed to help you survive. Turning toward these parts of you with compassion has worked well for me. These “loyal soldiers”[1] are trying to protect you and keep you safe, they love you. Having a conversation with them and letting them know the battle is over can help them integrate back into more healthy parts of your psyche.

    1- Plotkin, B. (2013). Wild mind: a field guide to the human psyche. San Francisco, New World Library.

    1. Hmmm, I wonder what I was so afraid of that made those old patterns surface. I’ll meditate on that a bit. Thank you.

      On a personal level (partially for your amusement/mental imagery), it was really bizarre to feel my old doc marten boots wearing, flannel loving, multiple piercings, scowly surly emotionally repressed version taking hold. My current incarnation was present, but was locked deep inside and relegated to an observer role. And while doc marten self spewed thoughts and words and expansive gestures that I felt I had little control over, inside my head I was thinking things like, “Holy shit, THIS person still exists? Where the hell is this coming from? And how do I make it settle down a bit so I can sit here and be genuine instead?”

  2. I hope this works out. It’s amazing how your past versions of yourself never completely go away. It’s really hard to balance all the versions of yourself with your new growing self.

    1. Egad, so true. And there are so darn many of them! So annoying. Can’t I just be this one persona, please? Morphing into others unexpectedly is weird and confusing.

      1. Maybe we just need to acknowledge the other personas, listen to there concerns, acknowledge those concerns and send them on there Merry Way? I dunno…

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