When you meet someone new, a breath of fresh air blows into your life. A dance ensues, where you get to know them, and they get to know you. At first it is a festival of likes, and it continues that way for a while, but then the hump is reached, the middle of the week of relationships. The point where they discover some things about you that don’t necessarily fit into their image of you, and vice versa. If the relationship survives this phase then it often goes on to become a lifelong friendship. If it does not survive, then two people go their separate ways, thinking thoughts, feeling feelings, wondering, questioning, perhaps slightly frustrated, and eventually moving on to new relationships.
My own experience of this follows such a set pattern, that I must admit that I have become very fatalistic about relationships.
When people first meet me they never actually see me for who I am, as I am.
Astrologically this can be seen in my natal chart. I have Venus in Pisces, and the Moon in the 12th conjunct my Virgo Ascendent, both of which oppose each other and square Neptune (a T-square). This makes me very susceptible to the projections of others.
I used to see myself as a mirror, and as such felt it was my responsibility to reflect back as positive an image as possible to those who gazed upon me. Which is actually a very easy thing to do. People have many qualities which are admirable, and pointing these out to them is a great pleasure. People love to hear about their inner and outer beauty, and they gain some needed insight and inspiration about themselves, hopefully boosting their self image, and stimulating them to share themselves with others. To pass on the good news. We are all beautiful, some of us have just forgotten and need reminding.
I enjoy this particular trait of mine. It is immensely rewarding to make others feel good about themselves.
But there is a flip side to this, as there is with everything.
People sometimes get addicted to this side of me, and want more. I am happy to give as much as I can, but at some point I have nothing more to give. I am empty. This is when I need to retreat to replenish my energy. To spend some time on my own.
This does not always go down well. People often think that I am rejecting them. I am not, but if they get between me and my retreat, they often come across the part of me which protects my softer side.
My Mars in Scorpio and my Pluto in the 1st.
I can be very blunt about my own needs, especially when I am tired. This has caused people to react very negatively towards me. I realise it is a shock. They are used to the soft pliant side of me, and did not realise that underneath lies a fierce side. The reason I can be gentle is because I know that I can call upon the inner savage should someone mistake the pliancy for weakness and decide to take advantage.
I have attempted to warn people that there is more to me than they are perceiving, that the pleasant side is just one aspect of many, but people never listen to warnings. Sometimes I get the impression that people expect me to be one thing and never deviate. To choose my role and stick with it. That being nice and being fierce are not allowed to co-exist in the same entity.
Very few people seem to understand that these two sides are both expressions of the real me, as are all my other facets, and that they both exist in relative harmony within me. Many feel that I have somehow fooled them into thinking I was nice and thoughtful, playing a part, wearing a mask, when in actual fact I am mean and nasty.
I have occasionally tried to explain myself, but it is a pointless task. Once a person has made up their mind, they close it, and that is that. I used to be deeply hurt by this. I felt that a large part of who I was, was being rejected. I still get hurt by it, but as I get older, and as this happens so often, I have become inured. After all, it is my fault for being this way.
I have tried to change myself, but I have never been successful in this.
I have Pluto and Uranus conjunct in my first house (if you know your astrology, you know vaguely how old I am, and may well wonder why the hell I’m still such a basket case, except having Fruit Loops (Uranus) and Death Stares (Pluto) holding hands in the part of the natal chart which represents the self should explain that. And Uranus is conjunct Jupiter and trine Mercury, so the insanity is expanded and infects the mind too). Which means that I am ultimately incapable of being anyone other than myself, all of myself, as I am, flaws, faults, quirks, and all. I can’t stand being fake. I have tried. It is necessary to attempt things, even if just once, sometimes twice, but three is not always a charm. Pretending to be who I am not never lasts for very long because I get very restless wearing a skin which does not belong to me. It’s like wearing a woollen sweater which is so itchy, scratchy, and uncomfortable that freezing to death is preferable to wearing it.
But I have to say there are times when I wish I could be fake. Someone else. To pretend to be who I am not, or at least to sacrifice most of me and choose to only be the part of me that other people like. If I only expressed my nice side and pretended that that was all there was to me, then people would love me, and I wouldn’t have to deal with the fallout when people find there is more to me than just the one facet.
But that is never going to happen. I’m too stubborn. And, to tell you the truth, I really love the part of myself most people reject. It’s a gutsy, straight talking, fiercely independent, challenging, hilariously funny, deeply pondering, extremely sensitive, imaginative, and many other delicious things I adore part of me. It is the part of myself I like and love the most.
I don’t expect people to like all of me, in fact I don’t expect people to like me at all, and I am always surprised when they do, but I never expect it to last. I figure that as soon as the first blush of like is over, they will realise I am not who they thought I was, and they will make a hasty exit from the relationship. That’s the pattern.
I used to chase after people asking them what it was that I had done which was so wrong that they suddenly hated me. I used to try and win their love back. Try to make amends for being who I was, by trying to be who I was not to please them. I don’t bother anymore.
To embrace all of a person, accepting them as a whole, with the bits you don’t like, is a difficult thing to do, I do realise that. It starts with acceptance of the whole of the self. Once you embrace all of yourself, including the bits you don’t like, then doing the same with other people is easier. It takes a lot of time and a lot of effort, most people just don’t have that kind of time and effort to spare. Life moves at an alarming pace, so it is better to cut and run, than to stick around.
There is a secret I never tell people about myself. It is something only those who stick around are eventually able to discover for themselves because it reveals itself naturally.
*This is a post I wrote for my tumblr before I had a WordPress… something reminded me of it and since I don’t have anything to say today I thought I’d let the me who had something to say a while ago speak instead.