I’ve never been one to go along easy or take the path of least resistance. I like to fight and grapple with real or self-made obstacles. I’ve spent my whole life building fortresses and sharpening my weapons of mass destruction. If you are one of my friends, you know that I don’t take kindly to criticism of any kind even though I say I welcome “constructive criticism”. Truth is even when I solicit advice, I narrow the responses I’d like to hear and if you respond outside of what I want then I brush your advice aside like garbage. I choose from my arsenal of excuses to divert myself from the truth no matter how beneficial it might be. I tell myself things like “they just don’t understand” and “if they were really hearing me they wouldn’t be so judgmental.” Its tiring, all this fighting, and all my defensiveness wears thin on my relationships.
However, recently I’ve engaged in some of the best, open conversation that I’ve experienced in a long time. It comes by way of a gal I’ve only known for a short amount of time but she already feels like a close friend. The best part about her is the way she totally disarms me. Without lacking any honesty she strips me of any reason to be hostile and through the course of conversation I find myself laying down my weapons of defensiveness. I don’t need to make jokes because I feel insecure and I don’t have to hold back the truth for fear of rejection or shame. Sometimes I feel a little naked knowing how much she knows but more often than not the freedom that comes with feeling known outweighs any amount of awkwardness or discomfort. She is teaching me how to love well in relationships and my hope is to love her well in return.