Come one, come all: Watch nine months of hard work evaporate in an encounter with one (very cute) man!

Tuesday morning. I should be in a side show. Really, I should. Here I've been preaching that I'm enough - good enough, strong enough, smart enough - for months and, the first time a man walks in, I toss it all to the side and become Painfully Insecure Girl again. (Thanks Marla for bringing that to my attention!) So, I guess what I need to figure out is, has it all been a lie? Have I been bluffing my way through all this time? Or, am I, in point of fact, much stronger than I've been feeling since Thursday night? And, perhaps most importantly (to me): can I be Strong, Secure (Healthy!) Girl and have Love in my life?

Here's what I think (I think): while the confident, I-don't-need-a-man me schtick was great and definitely helped me get where I am now, it's not who I am. Now, don't freak out, kids, I'm not saying that I want to be a doormat for love, either. What I'm saying is that, to be true to who I truly am, I need to find a way to integrate that strong, confident woman with one who can be vulnerable to love. I must do that because, regardless of whether I ever do find it, I simply cannot close myself off to the possibility forever. No matter what anyone else says, I still believe in love and am still trying to keep the belief that it's out there for me alive. Oh, I'd done a pretty fair job of ripping that flower out of my garden, but it's a tough plant, with lots of roots curled around everywhere inside me. You don't give up the dream of a lifetime just because it's not convenient, and, for me, finding Love and building a life with someone has always been at the center of my life.

Perhaps I'm looking at this all wrong, though. Perhaps the two dreams - being strong, self-sufficient, and healthy and being loved and in love - are not mutually exclusive. Perhaps, in fact, they are intimately connected and the one (love) cannot truly, happily exist without the other?

I don't have answers right now, only questions. Questions and the sure and certain knowledge that, whatever else happens, I cannot give up on me. Cannot throw aside the last nine months of hard work and dedication. Cannot stop being The New Me just because there's a wonderful man out there who may or may not even feel the same way about me. I want both and, because it's eight weeks before I'll know how things turn out with Nathan (yes, that's his name), I'm going to focus all of my energy on kicking some butt with my health. In eight weeks, I can be well below 200 pounds and back on the path of strength and security that I worked so hard to find. Then, if the young man is, indeed, interested, I'll be ready.

Are you with me? One more time with feeling!


Shaunta said…
I just wanted to drop a note and tell you that I really enjoyed your blog. I totally feel you on this post. No matter how many times I tell myself that it doesn't matter what other people think of me and my weight (that their issues with larger people are THEIR ISSUES) it still hurts.

I have a blog with my friend Shylah on this very topic.
Anonymous said…
Denise - you can be in love and confident at the same time.

How would you expect someone else to love you when you don't even love yourself? I'm not saying that you don't love yourself, I saying how could anyone of us expect this???? Don't try to second guess Nathan - you don't know what might be going through his head.

You are right on to say that self-confidence and love should go hand in hand. No one else can make you happy! They can enhance it only if you are already grounded and secure. So stick with it, girl! If Nathan works out, wonderful. If not, still wonderful!
Rebecca said…
Go for it Denise. You deserve this. Let your heart lead for a little bit, and if you feel things not going the way you want, assess the situation and regain control, or continue to fall head over heels. But don't ever lose yourself.
Kris said…
I think you do have the answers. :)

"Perhaps I'm looking at this all wrong, though. Perhaps the two dreams - being strong, self-sufficient, and healthy and being loved and in love - are not mutually exclusive. Perhaps, in fact, they are intimately connected and the one (love) cannot truly, happily exist without the other?"

Sounds like a great answer to me!

I love reading your blog because our minds seem work similarly. I can relate so well. Of course, it's much easier for me to give advice to someone else than it is to remember it for myself. ;) I guess all I wanted to say (and this is a reminder to me as well) is that just because you have an hour or a day or a week of feeling insecure, that doesn't mean that's who you are or that you're moving backwards. Your thoughts and feelings will change--that's part of the journey and part of being human. :) Who you are at the core, is still there. Take a deep breath, acknowledge that you're having a moment of insecurity and have faith. Your strong, secure, healthy you will be back--with a vengeance, for certain!
Anonymous said…
I'm absolutely with ya! And of course those two things can co-exist! As a matter of fact, I think each gives strength to the other. I am a better me because Scott loves me, and he's a better him because I love him. That love gives me strength AND courage AND determination...things I did not have before I fell in love :=)

I love how you think out loud!
Well, you already KNEW I loved you and your blog, so. . . .

We don't NEED men, you know. We LIKE and LOVE them. And stuff.

Depending on the man, of course.

With a man or without a man, we are ourselves with an identity.

That identity doesn't change just because a man is or isn't in our lives.

Sometimes, it's more FUN with a man in our lives. Not NECESSARY, just more fun.

Rock on, girl. With a man, or without a man, you are cool.
Anonymous said…

Just giving you back the same advice you've given me over the years...

You can definitely be happy with or without love - you know this. Being strong, independent and fabulous and being in love are not mutually exclusive......

BUT...why would you wait eight weeks, eight days or even eight minutes to find out if someone wanted to be with you?

You are worth more then that..
Unknown said…
I'm with you sister! I guess it's possible to be in love and still hold on to your identity. Heck, I guess it's still o.k. to believe in love period. I'm losing my ability to believe it's out there. Too much heartache, too much dissapointment turned my rosy view a little darker. More gray now.

I'm sure things will work out for the best for you though. Sounds like one awesome guy you've found.
Unknown said…
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Brooke said…
Maybe you're already ready. Maybe you are perfectly right, perfectly good, perfectly enough, just as you are.
Anonymous said…
Have you considered that it's BECAUSE you are the new confident, self sufficient you he's so attracted to you? That you radiate so much pride and self confidence he was blown away?
And that even if it doesn't work, you will be perfectly fine BECAUSE you are justifiably proud and pretty darn pleased with the new Denise? A little self doubt is only natural - otherwise, people can become arrogant and self absorbed. And that's NOT attractive :)

Shannin said…
Gotta agree that probably one of the main reasons he was attracted to you was because of your self confidence. Just don't let this relationship, no matter where it goes, dictate how you take care of yourself. If it doesn't work out, it's his loss. If it does work out, whoo-hoo....

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