I've always thought of myself as the person who loves life the most amongst my peers. I love everything about life: the happy moments, the sad ones, friendship, loneliness, joy, melancholy, excitement, fear. At least, I thought I did.
I thought I was the one who could get along with different people pretty easily or be on her own and still be happy. Because, you know, that's true: whatever the situation is, I will face it without feeling too sorry for myself. Problem is: is this really loving life and loving yourself and being really happy about it? What if it is the other way around? What if people who fuss about everything, who don't settle, who won't accept nothing but the best enjoy life more than I do? What if loving life doesn't necessarily mean to let it go by, struck by how beautiful it is and at the same time held back by the fear of losing it?
Of course, being able to be on your own is of great help in life. If necessary, you can face difficult situations without needing much help and that's good. But you also - say - find yourself sightseeing Rome alone because the friend you were supposed to visit won't take a moment off her busy schedule to meet you or you end up spending lots of Saturday nights at home because everybody has already made plans and you're not included. And, let's face it, you can brag about how cool you are because you toured a big city alone when other friends of yours wouldn't have been able to get back to the hotel with a guide leading the way but, in the end, is this really what life is about? When you realize you don't have many photos of yourself in wonderful places because you were alone when you visited them (so you had to take the picture and you were too shy to ask other people to take it for you) you realize how sad you look from the outside. And, mind, I don't consider myself a loser and I am quite happy because I'm not one of those silly girls who need their Mom or boyfriend to take care of them. I did lots of things in my life (most of them I am really proud of) and - though I am the most self-conscious, insecure person I know - I wouldn't change my life with nobody else's. I have friends and a wonderful family I have been blessed with. However being independent is one thing, being stupid is another.
I tend to believe that not needing any help is a sign of being a grown-up person. So I suppose I've been a grown-up since I was about five years old, because - let's face it - I've never been very good at asking for help. If other people need me, I would be happy to listen to what they have to say and provide help or kind phrases or a hug or suggestion. When I need help it's a completely different story: I would usually ask "So, what about you?" so I don't have to talk about what's wrong with me.
Recently I read Someday This Pain Will Be Useful To You and I had the astonishing sensation that it was talking about me. All that I-prefer-adults-to-teenagers nonsense, all those feelings of not fitting in were something I am really familiar with. And still it bothers me that the main character has to be gay in the end. I mean, I support gay people wholeheartedly, but I think that not fitting in is something that goes beyond your sexual orientation. I am a straight, kind of average person, and I still don't fit in.
And what I recently found out is that it's not other people's fault if I don't fit in. It could be the know-it-all bitch that wants to see you fail, it could be the boy that tells you that you're ugly, it could be the adult that tells you to grow up when you feel you've done enough for your age, it could be the teacher that tells you you could do better even though you're one of the best in your class: all these things can undermine your self-confidence but in the end it's your fault if you let them win. You are your worst enemy.
The thing is that what I truly am is an extrovert, kind, always smiling person with lots of interests and passions, willing to try different things and to meet different people. But – since I tend to think that my opinions are not interesting enough, that I am not important, cute, fun or clever enough to even be considered - what I am in my everyday life is the shy girl that you can always catch with a gloomy face muttering words such as "che angoscia/sofferenza" ("what a pain"). And I don't want to be that person. Because I am not that person. And, come on, 23 is not the right age to be bitter. So I suppose I could ask for a little help when I need it and realize that maybe what I have to say is important enough to make my voice be heard. Even though there's nobody there to listen to it, I still have to shout out. And if the wind will take my words to the single person that cares then everything will be fine. Otherwise I will have thrown away all the good qualities that I have and other people will only have had the possibility of seeing the worst ones. So I have to stop this self-inflicted sufferance and step out into the world with a brand new smile across my face. I've held the best I could and it didn't help me become a better person. So it's time to start a new phase, more open towards other people, at least the right ones.
Song: Scissor Sisters
Song: Scissor Sisters