You know that line in the Taylor Swift song… Why you gotta be so mean?
That’s me. I can be mean.
Most people would think I’m delusional for saying that. I’m the nicest person they know, they say. I don’t have a mean bone in my body, they say. But I do. Rarely anyone sees this side of me, because I’ve learned to tame that baby dragon (with my Scorpio stinger), where she stays fed and watered in the basement of my heart.
But every once in a while, she comes out to play. It’s no longer a fire breathing death disaster as in days of the past. It’s now subtle. Like little backhanded comments, that jab at another right in their soft parts, leaving them wounded without even realizing they’ve been hurt. I’m that good. Don’t cross the Kirsten.
For a long time, I lived by the mantra of the ever cool Hugh Grant in About a Boy “I’m a bloody island, I’m bloody Ibitha,” proud of my strength and independence as a woman. It made me powerful, I thought. It made me courageous, I thought.
Most times we’re taught that being strong is powerful. And in order to be powerful, we must sacrifice our warmth; our heart. Movies and TV now show female heroines as tough as nails, rather than in touch with their emotions. It’s way cooler to be the wise-cracking sarcastic like Veronica Mars. It’s not safe to be vulnerable and real.
But herein lies the contradiction.
I’m a big personality. I make big facial expressions. I have big hand gestures. There is really nothing small about me, except my chest size.
If I’m speaking out loud or about something personal, chances are, I’ll crack a joke and try to make it entertaining, or worthy of an audience.
Even if that audience is just one person.
That’s just always been who I am.
In acting class recently, after doing my monologue for the first time, my teacher had me sit on my hands and just speak the words from a place of truth, nothing else. No big expressions, no wild hand gestures. No need to entertain or perform.
I was just to be.
It was torture.
“Why?” I asked. “This just feels wrong.”
She said, “Trust me.”
I did my monologue again. And this time, when I was done, she asked me how it felt. I told her I felt like a brick wall, void of any emotion and boring as hell.
She and the class disagreed – saying it was way more powerful this way.
Stunned, I asked: “But how?”
I had intended to start blogging this book months ago. That seemed simple enough, as I’ve had it planned out for years.
Originally this book was called, How to Love Yourself (When everything in the world tells you not to). I had these great chapters, “WWMD, or What Would Miley Do?” except this was based on Miley as innocent Hannah Montana and not licking a wrecking ball, so well, I had to adjust accordingly with the ever changing times.
Then it was another title, then another. The title has changed as many times as I change my underwear. Daily. (Just for clarification).
I even had the chapters fully mapped out and structured perfectly as the Type A part of my personality finds so comforting. Who doesn’t love to pretend they are in total control?! But then I couldn’t actually write the book and feel any sense of flow or fluidity. Imagine my surprise to realize it was too structured, even for me!
And then it hit me. I was trying to write a 5D book from a 3D mindset. AKA I was trying to write about the heart and soul, from my intellect. This might sound like Pig Latin for some but just stay with me.
A lot has changed in the past few years. We are in the midst of some of the most transformational times of our lives. The world is not the same place it was 5 years ago. Technology and social media have exploded, the Disney kids have grown up, and we’ve become far too comfortable having relationships with our gadgets rather than with real people.
I’ve never been good at letting go. When I was young and someone called out for me, I would respond, “Hold On.” I never knew it would mean literally.
I still have memory boxes from childhood that my mom is convinced are filled with gum wrappers. Okay, in my defense they were really funny bubble gum wrappers (you remember the ones with the joke?) that were a gift and are now like retro…. Nuff said.
Recently at the Salvation Army, while dropping off some awesome things that had been in my trunk far longer than necessary, I stood there, pondering if it was really best to let them go… I mean, of course I need 3 pairs of Uggs. As if needing a healthy shove from an angel in overalls, a guy called out, “When you left your house it felt like a good idea. Don’t turn back. Now just go out and get more stuff.” Tail between my legs, I hugged my Uggs goodbye. #HugsforUggs
I’ve mastered the art of the long goodbye, watching my family until they disappear around the corner, soaking in every last essence of their aura, knowing that someday it will be the last time. Pretty morbid sure but it’s a coping mechanism I’ve adopted, and call me superstitious, I ain’t changing now.
I’ve lost family before, tragically and suddenly. It’s excruciating. Not just in losing the ones we’ve lost, but how it changes those left behind.
That kind of letting go is forced upon us, and can lead to patterns of abandonment, thereby shaping how we see the world whether we are aware of it or not.