too cool for school.

Everyone has a different approach on how they show emotions. Some would say exhibiting too much emotion is a sign of weakness, I on the other hand have ALWAYS believed it takes an abundant amount of strength to actually reveal how you’re truly feeling. Masking emotions is not for everyone. I, for one can’t do it ALL. I inherited my father’s fury unibrow, that scrunches and gets low when I don’t understand something. Some people wear their emotions on their sleeves, I happen to wear them on my face. I have to catch myself most days when I’m making the “are you stupid?” face-or what my friends call, “the Fatima face.” I’m 100% sure that is my face 89.9% of the time.

I absolutely despise labels, yet at times I find myself using them for the sake of explaining certain situations. Who doesn’t want to be the cool guy, or the cool girl? They portray themselves as if they have no care in the world. They’re chill and nothing bothers them. Or so it seems.

Let me tell you what I learned about the cool guy and cool girl. Things bother them, they bottle up those emotions and eventually… POP goes the weasel. Communicating is extremely vital in ANY relationship you foster. In order to cultivate and strengthen existing relationships, and new ones, you MUST communicate at ALL times. And I admit talking seems like a chore most days, but without verbal and even non-verbal communication there isn’t much we can accomplish in any category of our life.

In relationships, I’m SO the cool girl. Nothing really bothers me. You don’t call for a couple of days, I’m cool – I’m entirely too busy in my own life to really notice. Plus being clingy is NOT my thing. Time and dedication should be given freely. They hang out with other friends – who are girls, I’m cool. What’s a relationship without trust anyways?

And I don’t even think I intentionally try to be the “cool girl.” I was cool with it all. Not because, I didn’t feel the need to communicate buried emotions, because relationships are so tricky. People give different, love different,  and most importantly they communicate different. Just because he didn’t text me every second of the day didn’t mean he didn’t care. Just because my mother is more abrasive than other mothers, doesn’t mean she doesn’t love me the same. My father is a man of very little words, but his actions leave an impact on me daily. So I’ve learned over the years, not to ask for much. I never intended to be the “cool girl.” My disposition always remains the same. So I continued to be patient, because I’d want the same in return.

But by labeling myself I did myself a disservice. Why can’t we be a little bit of everything? Matters don’t have to be so black and white. We attempt to fit ourselves into a box, when we want to. And others do the same  when we act in a negative way, i.e if we do something “crazy” are we crazy? No.

I felt myself closing in, the wall I had built to protect myself was starting to cave in on me.

We often mimic the love we receive. He was so extremely chill, that I let my inner cool girl shine as well. I don’t think I was necessarily accommodating him as much as I was accommodating my own feelings. I could obviously never refrain from being passionate as he would say, so it wasn’t like I was changing or molding myself FOR HIM, but there was an element to my actions that tried to be collected at all times, to be in control of them. I guess it was never about him.

We build facades with the intent that when a person doesn’t give us what we want, we tell ourselves, “that’s alright, because I prepared myself for this” and if they do, then we hoped for it.(I wanted to be the strong girl.) But that’s the thing about building facades.. no one wins. My friend Candice literally ALWAYS tells me what she wants – a phone call from me, and because she matters to me, I give her that. That is how ALL relationships works. We actively make a choice EVERYDAY to nurture relationships we want. But remember, you can NOT ask for things you, yourself have difficulty providing.

Whether we keep our emotions bottled up or we scream the things we want, we’re not really treading properly. He never spoke up about what he wanted, and neither did I (for awhile) and we both lost.. and the kicker is – none of us were playing the game.

I wanted words of affirmation, and he wanted.. actually I’m still not sure what he wanted, but its a learning process right? I also recognize no matter how much I wanted words from him, until he was ready to give them, I would never get the conversation I so deeply longed for. So I walked away knowing for the first time, I didn’t have to be the cool girl.. or any girl for that matter. I could just be me, and I am composed of many elements. Collected, cool, crazy, but above all – loving.

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