I’ve been hiding.
In plain sight, I have been hiding. I'm really good at hiding.
A few weeks back, Marie and I were out. Marie and I only became very good friends in the past few years. So, needless to say, she didn’t know me in college. I’m not sure how we got on the topic, but we started discussing all my various hair colors and styles.
See, I started hiding in college. But in college I hid behind pink and purple and black and orange hair. I hid behind black eyeliner and black lipstick. I hid behind boy haircuts and ironic t-shirts.
I explained to Marie that as much as it doesn’t make sense, I did it all to keep everyone from noticing me, at least the real me.
Then she asked what made me stop. And I answered honestly, that I just grew out of it.
At least it was honest at the time.
Some time around 25 I just stopped cutting my hair into weird shapes, I stopped dying it unnatural colors, and I put away my “Boys Lie” t-shirt.
And then I threw myself into my work.
Ten years later, well almost, I have a job I actually like, I’ve been published a bunch of times and I even completed a novel.
But over the last two years I have been letting myself get bigger and bigger. I’ve been smoking and eating things that aren’t good for me and not working out and all because I don’t want people (read guys) to see the me. Not the real me anyway.
Not that I think there is anything wrong with the real me. Quite the opposite. I think I rock. But what if I really liked a guy and he didn’t like me. Then what?
Whereas, if I have a pre-fabricated, built-in excuse for why I am alone -- I’m a freak, I’m too caught up in my work, I’m fat, well, then, no one gets hurt.
So I hide. I hide, because I’m afraid. I’m terrified of getting hurt.
Worse. I know I am doing it. Since talking to Marie, I have realized it every time I choose something unhealthy to eat. Every time I hit the snooze button. Every time I lit a cigarette.
But I’m tired of it. Which is why I am writing this now. I tired of hiding. And while I know only a handful of people actually read this blog. Just knowing that it is out there may be enough.
I hope it will be anyway.