One of the guys

Peggy Olson:  I know what men think of you: That you’re looking for a husband, and you’re fun. And not in that order.
Joan Holloway: Peggy, this isn’t China. There’s no money in virginity.

I’ll never be one of the guys.

Why?

Do I even want to be?

I dunno.

It’s odd though.  I hear it from my guy friends all the time.  When they think a girl, possibly a friend, or the girlfriend of one of their buddies, is super cool…they say “she’s one of the guys.”

I guess that’s not even remotely close to what I’d want to “be” to any one of them. Or is it? After all, girls who are “one of the guys” never seem to have a problem attracting guys.  But still.  Here I am, past three decades of life, and I’ve realized…I’ll never be “one of the guys.”

It might be because I don’t have brothers and don’t know how to have a completely, 100% platonic friendship with a guy.  Ok, that’s huge.  And maybe something that’s a better topic to share with a close friend or a therapist.  But I dunno.  It’s weird when every guy you ever meet is a potential boyfriend, husband, lover.  I’ve never really known any that couldn’t be.  Besides male relatives of course.  But, I haven’t hung out with them enough to perfect the art.

Though I look at Joan Holloway…Joanie to Richard [Sterling]…you know, from Mad Men?  Now, if I were into girls…she’d be my #1 crush.  She’s sexy hot, curvy, feminine, but she dishes it out…just like the men.  She’s the only girl in the boardroom.  Seriously…even Peggy only goes in when she’s making a pitch to a client.  She’s not afraid of speaking her mind.  She knows how to put people in their place…matter of factly.  Perhaps I watch a lot of Mad Men…it’s true. I’m obsessed with their 1960s’ complexities.  How women are only secretaries.  Yet even in this world, I call places and people assume I’m the secretary.  Still!

But if I could be a Joan…I’d be thrilled.  That’s not to say she’s got it all figured out. She obviously married the wrong guy.  Well, he was the first good one to ask.  She makes mistakes, falls back in to old habits, but never truly exposes her vulnerabilities.  Is that what makes her the type of guyish girl I’d want to be? Because I relate?

But Joan…she relates to Marilyn Monroe.   I mean, remember when she was laying on Roger’s couch, dabbing her eyes?  Roger had to assure her that she wouldn’t end up alone and in despair…like Marilyn had.  Yes.  Like Marilyn had.  Marilyn…one of the sexiest, most feminine, admired women of our pop culture history.  She’d ended up alone, and in despair.

Yet what did Joan want most out of life? To be a well-off housewife.  The ultimate goal of her existence.  And she was pained to think she could possibly be bored, lonely, and miserable as one. Is that the sad fate of a femme fatale? Someone sassy and bold…who never stops being a woman?  Does she end up bored, lonely…in misery?

But I’m not even close to being as strong as Joan.  Unlike her, I have a way of looking at guys, with these puppy dog eyes, a way that makes them feel like they’re more to me than they really are.  It’s not intentional.  But it’s real. A guy once told me, “Don’t look at me with those eyes…” and I thought “What eyes?” No really.  He was accusing me of flirting with my eyes.  I wasn’t.  Honestly.  I didn’t have feelings for him.  Though, I have to admit, the first time we met, I thought maybe I could.  How telling….

Let’s break it down…I read chick lit.  I smell like vanilla.  I don’t wear baseball caps.  I don’t give “thumbs ups”.  I’m scared of the dumbest things. I have a way of whining, that only girls can perfect.  I am sensitive.  Emotional.  I cry…not enough, but I do.  I like having colorful fingernails, long hair, carrying clutches and wearing cute earrings.  I don’t watch sports.  And I don’t really care about them (unless a boy I like does).

I’m educated, independent, and successful.  Yet, I’m not a feminist.

But let’s explore some more.  I’m dramatic.  “Boys” aren’t.  I try too hard.  “Guys” don’t.  I’m not elusive.  And if, for some reason, I’m hard to pin down…it’s probably cuz I’m holding out.  I don’t drink like a fish. No, seriously.  One or two drinks and I’m good.  Better than good.  I seem high maintenance…(I’m totally not…but I’m perceived that way….).  Apparently, guys don’t like that.   I seem like I’d get grossed out easily…but I don’t. I swear.

So what is it that makes a girl “one of the guys” and that makes me the girl who can’t be there “without being there”…? I stand out…as a girl? I speak up…like a girl? It also doesn’t help that have the voice of a little girl.

But it’s important to note that I lose all my wit and intelligence around boys [I like].  I get flustered.  Really.  I forget how astute, calculated, and bright I can be.  Bottom line, I stop acting like myself.  And that makes me a girl.  A girly girl.  A girl’s girl.

My bestie once told a guy I was dating that he was a girl’s man.  Ya know…the opposite of a man’s man.  Sure he smoked cigars, drank stiff cocktails, and wore suits every day.  But he opened doors, ordered for me at restaurants, served me off communal plates, walked on the traffic side of the street, didn’t care a lick about athletics, and enjoyed drama.  Maybe that’s why I liked him.  The way manly men like girls who are “one of the guys.”

And that’s ok.  Like Katy Perry said…”I wanna be one of the girls…pretty in pearls, and not one of the boys.”

 

Photo credit: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/06/19/christina-hendricks-joan-_n_879910.html

 

©2012, Leegal Deeva.  All rights reserved.

enlightened loneliness

enlightened loneliness

I’m all for evolution of self…knowing yourself better, improving, realizing why you do what you do…it helps you understand yourself, help yourself, heal yourself, control yourself (and your emotions).  But what happens when you become so enlightened that you find yourself in a bubble, a bubble that no one else can pierce…?  What happens when you find yourself surrounded by less and less fun, chill, unenlightened, “regular” people?  What happens then?

I am judgmental.  Severely judgmental.  One of my areas of acute judgment is when I judge people by the company they keep.  I can’t help but wonder what binds them. What do they see in one another?  What makes them want to continue to spend time together?

And…I pride myself in the quality of friendships I possess.  There is nothing in life I value more than communication, deep conversations, analysis, sharing…vulnerability, secrets, ideas, philosophies, seeking understanding, coming to realizations.  I love it, love it, love it.  I suppose the more you engage in that, the more enlightened you become.  The more you learn.  The more you grow.  The more you understand.  The depth of your mind, thoughts and soul can be limitless.

But do you also become lonelier? Do you find yourself less and less satisfied by the company of regular folks? Every day folks? The ones who don’t have the luxury of thinking, wallowing, analyzing, obsessing…  Mind you, it’s not because they don’t want to or don’t know how.  But truly, they are too busy living, day to day, paying their bills, making it from event to event, waking up, drinking coffee, showering, lathering, rinsing, repeating, getting in the car, parking, working, leaving, picking up the dry cleaning, grocery shopping, vacuuming, putting the dishes away, numbing their minds with a few hours of brainless television before the wake up to do it all over again.

I love enlightened people.  I do.  I admire them.  I do.  I respect them.  Truly.  But when does the desire for enlightenment and the sinking hole of enlightenment envelope you so tightly that you become isolated from regular people, regular experiences, and mediocre connections?  Life is short, which is why we must understand all we can in an efficient use of time.  But life is also too short to spend alone…

And so, my enlightened realization as of late is as follows: There’s nothing sadder than sacrificing company for enlightenment.  After all, it’s lonely at thetop.

 

©2012, Leegal Deeva.  All rights reserved.

i’d rather be me

I’ve said this countless times. I’ve said it at other people’s weddings. I’ve said it as I stared at the perfect body of a girl at the gym. I’ve whispered it to my closest friends when someone had something new to show off…

I’d always rather be ME.
Why?
Biblically, God promises us that he’ll never give us more burdens that we can actually carry. Ok. I also know through my own study of scripture and various interpretations, that the cross we each carry is apparently just the right size for us. And let’s not forget one of the most common quotes of all time…”the grass is always greener in somebody else’s yard”…
To that, I turn up my nose and say: “I’d still rather be me.”
In the material, earthly realm…I look at it this way. My height is the height I want (though I tell people I wish I was 2 inches taller, but let’s face it, then I wouldn’t be able to wear real heels)…my hair is the way I want it (even though I have spent countless days, months and probably YEARS blowdrying and straightening…I’m still secretly glad it’s curly)…my eyelashes are awesome…my skin tans easily….my parents rock…no seriously, they are incredible, the best parents for ME (a Dad who is sensitive and romantic, he has taught me to value the important things in life, to give of myself to others without expecting anything in return…and he’s also given me the gift of music…and I have a Mom who has sparked my curiosity and cleverness, taught me to budget, prioritize, plan effectively, serve my community, and consistently and efficiently manage my time). My academic success (always, always came easy)…friendships, popularity…I possess the right personality to succeed in a social setting…my smile (it’s a trademark)…my background (my pedigree is pretty damn respectable…regardless of the sour apples that take part in it…)…my car is MY dream car…and regardless of what I’ve ever driven before, I’ve always been proud of it…my talents….wow, I am so grateful to God for giving me unique abilities, that make me seem indispensable, whether I’m serving as a volunteer, being a friend, or sharing a vital experience…I have great nails…I’m intuitive, intelligent, sensitive, emotional (with a well developed ability to “reason”)…I am eloquent, exemplary…I’ve never failed…I’ve never shamed my parents…let them down…hurt someone so profoundly that a “sorry” would not reverse it…I’m creative…aaaaaand, I give great advice. Amazing. Juuuust amazing.
But today I had to stop and think…seriously….what is SOOOOO damn special about any of these things? Is it like, if I stop and analyze them all critically, are any of them THAT special…THAT irreplaceable…THAT astonishing?
And it’s funny. B/c I can think of countless friends who would say, “Gosh, I wish I had her boyfriend!” or “Gosh, I wish I had her body…” When I look at someone with an amazing body, I think…”would I want her mind? her personality? her family? her friends? her experiences?”
Nope. I’d still rather be me. And keep mine.
BUT…
Don’t I wish that my hair was naturally straight and I could walk out of the shower and let it air dry into absolute beauty?
Don’t I wish that having a great body came easy and was effortless for me as opposed to a lifetime struggle and a DAILY challenge?
Don’t I wish that my career was stable and I knew exactly where I wanted to take it?
Don’t I wish that I’d found love when I was young and had never had my heart broken?
Don’t I wish my Dad could give me a cashed up AmEx and tell me to enjoy life?
Don’t I wish my Mom was concerned with makeup and fashion so I could have caught on to those thing earlier in life?
Don’t I wish that I didn’t take things personally and was able to just live out my life more carelessly, without so much intense emotion from day to day?
Don’t I wish that I wasn’t so damn responsible and could live for today without worrying about tomorrow?
Don’t I wish that I wasn’t so careful so that I could do things without being afraid of getting hurt or failing?
Don’t I wish that I wasn’t so acutely self aware that I could just be myself, alllllllll the time?
Don’t I wish that i possessed that unique sense of elation that solid, comfortable Christians possess without ever doubting my faith or without ever questioning God?
Don’t I wish I had the company of siblings, so that I could rest assured that I would never have to be alone…?
Hmmm…
It’s a struggle. A fine line between taking your blessings for granted and wishing you had more, or wishing it all came easier. My struggles and cares and worries…I’ve embraced them. Though they are not the best parts of my life, they have chiseled my character and given me depth.
I thank God for His grace and mercy in bringing me this far…and I wholeheartedly believe (at least my Mom drills this sentiment into my head) that He’s carried me all the way here…and He won’t forsake me…now. Or ever. Do I wish I could take a list of options and pick what I want for myself? YES. Is that possible? Not in the least.
And, so…when the going gets tough…and all I want to do is sit on my bed, in pj’s, eyes brimming with tears, pouring my heart out into my diary…or into a telephone mouthpiece…I realize how so truly blessed I still am. How aware of it I always will be. And how much God loves me, looks out for me, and takes care of me…
Always.
And I’m reminded…the one unforgiveable sin, the only unforgiveable sin, the worst sin to commit is: not to believe in Jesus Christ. Interesting, right? Not murder, not envy, not stealing, not adultery…but merely a faltering faith in Jesus Christ.
So when life seems bleak and dreary, and I get to feeling down on myself…I remind myself:
The LORD is my strength and my shield; my heart trusts in him, and I am helped. Psalm 28:7
That being said…I will control the things I can: thoughts, hair straightener heat settings, my mouth, my desire to work hard, my diet…as for the rest, I’ll leave up to God…and thank Him…everyday…for making me, ME.