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Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Let's Be Real - No, Really...


I find myself explaining myself more than I should.
Actually, back up for a moment because that is not entirely true.

Perception is something I have mentioned in at least one blog before, and the perception I made mention of is the way we appear to those around us on a daily basis.  Within our public lives, we were always told that we should not care what anyone else thinks about us, but the truth is we all do to some extent because there actually is a reality of "social norm" in any society.  With that being said, there are many aspects of my daily life in which I really do not care about the way others perceive me, while in other's I really do care; because that is called being human.  There are plenty of people out there who are so concerned with the public's opinion that they fabricate their entire lives around being a puppet of deception.  I cannot stand those people.  The problem is that I am often seen as that very person, even though I try to be the exact opposite.  

Am I saying my life is a shining example of what you should be?
Trust me, no, I am not who you want to look up to.
A few years ago I did figure out that being yourself is personally much easier than faking anything.
With that comes a few little annoyances though.

I am pretty sure everyone has been around at least one person before who is significantly overweight and claims they are eating healthy, can spout off all sorts of dietetic information, eats sparingly around others, and makes claims of a regularly active lifestyle.  Half a year goes by without seeing this person and when you cross paths again, they are still talking up the game, but you see no physical change whatsoever.  More common still are those who say they are losing weight and then post updates or pictures of themselves practically eating diabetes off of a plate through their social media outlets.
Am I being harsh?
No, because I think I have earned the right to say these things since I have lost over seventy pounds myself in fairly recent history.  

You see, I run multiple days each week, pay attention to what I eat on a daily basis, rarely eat anything you would consider to be a "dessert", and stopped drinking alcohol entirely well over a year ago.  When I tell anyone this who knew me as a younger, very thin guy in his early twenties:
I am rarely taken as being serious, just like the overweight people we all know who are not taken seriously about their weight loss methods.
I keep this picture ready on my iPhone for those who do not believe me:
Now, this is not bragging at all, but an attempt at proving a point of my honesty.  Actually, I figured out after some reflection that I am not proud of losing all of that weight because I was the person who allowed myself to get there in the first place - so it was my responsibility to fix my own issue.
(I know some overweight people have legitimate health issues, don't start with me about that.)

During this period of me taking the big jumps to get myself back to being "myself" I came to the conclusion that anything I had done in the past to appear as anything other than who I really am was no longer worth my time.  

I really did figure out that living life without thinking twice about what others perceived me to be was much easier than trying to make myself appear as anything else.

With this, some people see me as anything but the truth.  There are those who believe I fluff myself up or have some sort of motive or expectation out of them because of the way I readily present myself.  Here in the south, there is a commonly known occurrence of people without southern accents flipping a switch of the vernacular variety when surrounded by those who carry the trait.  I knew a girl when I was a teenager who grew up in the city but carried the drawl of a yokel when surrounded by certain people - and it bugged me, actually it still bugs me to this day and I have no accent to the best of my knowledge.
Why do we do things like this to "fit in"?

I was having a conversation a few days ago with someone I had recently met and something came up about porn and strip clubs.  First off, I have never bought any sort of porn in my life, though I have actually been to two strip clubs, neither of which I was interested in going to in the first place and will probably never set foot in one again.  Needless to say, she seemed hesitant to believe me, but the few who know me on a real level would easily back me up on that fact.  This stupid topic has come up with others a few times before and most people think I am being untruthful, but no.  My feelings about these two similar things do not hold to religious values as some would think - I genuinely and simply do not care about either of them because they are both designed to give a false sense of reality.  
Such is not my thing.

What I have found through this journey is that telling the truth about yourself is always easier than trying to make others think you are something else to gain some sense of acceptance.  However, I have also found that being truthful about certain things often makes your honest conversation appear to others as a lie.  

There are people who get turned off of me fairly easily because of my bluntness towards them, even if I am doing so in the most positive way.  I have this constant urge to tell people they are valuable and important to me if I really do fancy them in such a light.  This can and in some cases has turned them away, but at least I can say they knew their real value to me if my life were to suddenly end or became irreversibly compromised.  

I became tired and sick of living twenty-five years of trying to fit in or attempting to stand out.  
If my honesty turns you away, makes you think less of me, or causes you to believe I am actually lying for whatever reason, then so be it - I am better off without you.
If I have an intention for my actions, I let them be known, otherwise, I always mean exactly what I say without any other supplementary motive.
All I want is honesty.
I do not care if you chose not to believe me.

Grace and Peace,
-Drew


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