damaged goods

who isn’t? i’m damaged. certainly. nicks, bruises, bumps, dents…

i secretly love going to IKEA and visiting the ‘as is’ department.  what a joy.  i love examining things and seeing what a savings one can enjoy, just b/c a dresser is missing a handle, or a table is nicked, or a lamp isn’t stable on its base.  funny.  i kinda like it.
my mom on the other hand, has to buy an item, from the back, in a box, a box that’s not dented, damaged, bumped…anything.
but i like to take things “as is”…
after all, life comes to us “as is”
we don’t get to pick our families.  we don’t get to pick the people we work with.  we don’t get to choose our circumstances OR lifestyle for at least the first 14-18 years of our lives.  we don’t get to choose our looks.  we don’t get to choose our eye color (unless you believe in colored contacts, which i don’t).  we don’t get to choose our teachers…not til we get to college at least.  we don’t get to choose our IQ.  we don’t get to choose our talents…and most of our abilities are innate.  our personalities are tailored in the womb.  and yet, we have such high demands of others…
people say: “oh so and so has so much baggage”
people break-up: “she had too much baggage”
ok…how is it possible, to live out your life to an age past 25 years old and NOT have baggage?  everyone carries around some random, lame, dumb, scary, life-changing, traumatic, defining experience from when they were 1, or 5, or 12, or 16, or 21…right?
some of us carry around a random, lame, dumb, scary, life-changing, life-stretching, traumatic, defining, “how will i ever recover from something so huge” experience from when we were 1, 5, 12, 16, AND 21.  does that mean we have too much baggage?  no, it really just  means we LIVED.
ok, some things are tough to accept…kids, former spouses, rehab recoveries, crazy families…BUT THEN AGAIN, they are so common, how can we avoid ’em??? you can’t.
you have to take everyone “as is.”  it’s like buying a watermelon, is there a guarantee that it will be sweet? juicy? taste good at all? NEVERRR…
it’s a gamble.  so are people.  but in life, in relationships…you come “as is”.  you can fake it, for a while. never forever.  but you always come “as is.”
so when someone i love tells me they’re damaged, all i can think is “i know, and that’s why you’re beautiful…to me.”  like flaws, vulnerabilities…maybe if i was hand-picking, i’d opt out.  but this isn’t a brand new car…and let’s admit, it’s not till we get that first scratch on a new car, that we can actually relaxxx…and enjoy it.
to me, the true definition of “love” is “come as you are…”
next time you start doubting yourself…remember that i love you.  i love your quirks.  i love your circumstances.  i love your past.  i love your experiences.  i love your flaws. by love, i don’ t mean i enjoy it or i take pleasure in it. i mean, i love them b/c they are a part of you.  i accept them.  i embrace them.  i cherish them.  they are all the true contributors to you being the complicated, sensitive person…you are.  and i love you.