You are and always have been the love of my life! A love like ours doesn’t get forgotten, nor does it lessen with time. For 30 years I have pined for you and yearned for you. My dearest Confidence, you are my long lost love. I write to you to tell you– no, demand you– to please come back to me!
I remember spending my childhood with you by my side, and I miss that. It’s been three decades since you walked away from me and not a day goes by that I don’t miss you. We made such beautiful memories together. Remember when I thought I was so rad wearing my bright pink leggings with a handkerchief tied at the knee, Punky Brewster-style? Or when I had those shades on with neon yellow on one side and hot pink on the other? Ouch… I was smokin’. I remember my friends loving on what I did or said; they would all cheer me on and there you were, my dear Confidence, staring at me adoringly.
Then something happened when I turned 10. I started a new school in a new city and suddenly you abandoned me. There I was, standing in front of that classroom all alone. I was being introduced to everyone as the new student, and when the teacher asked me to take a seat, I walked over to an empty chair. Suddenly, Jeffrey kicked the chair down and snickered. Then, the whole class roared with laughter. I was mortified. I looked around for my dear sweet Confidence, but you were gone.
That was when I was just a kid and now I am 40. A mature woman. A mother to some fabulous kids. A loving wife that has been blessed with a great life. l am here, at the peak of my existence…I have arrived. Yet, you’re not here with me.
Why won’t you come back? I need my dear Confidence. Perhaps more than ever before. More than those gawky teenage years when I sat alone at lunch and cried into my sandwich. More than those college years when I was learning to stand up on my two feet and speak up, but everyone else’s voice was louder than mine.
Because now, I don’t need anyone’s approval. I don’t need people to invite me to their lunch table. Or pick me for their dodgeball team. I don’t need the other moms to invite me or my kids to their playdates and parties. I don’t need any of that. I just want to want me.
I am asking the self-hate to be gone. I want to treasure my graying hair for the wisdom it signifies, the fine lines on my face for the life it has lived so far, the tummy rolls for the children they nested and grew. I want to accept myself with loving arms and acceptance. I want to embrace you, my dear Confidence.
To not be unsure if the meal I planned, cooked, and served to 15 people would be OK? It was better than OK, so then why did I need the compliment?
I want to put on a fancy dress and apply my makeup then arrive at the party like a boss. Not shrink away when I stand next to a pretty, skinny, confident friend. What does she have that I don’t?
And when someone is toxic and polluting my soul with their venomous speech and demeanor, why can’t I just walk away?
Dear Confidence, my beloved, you are my shelter when the turbulent storms of the world tell me I am not good enough. You are my strength when all of the elements are trying to bring me down. You are my love, you always have been, and you always will be. I want you to know that I have everything but you. I have realized that I want to spend the rest of my life with you, and I “want that the rest of [my] life start as soon as possible.” Not tomorrow when I lay witheringly in my bed, contemplating what happened to the life I was granted, a life spent regretting the loss of my love, my Confidence.
Dearest Confidence, I will be waiting for your return until the last breath escapes my lips. I will put on my red lipstick, I will wear my finest dress, and I will show up to every place and corner I suspect you will be at. I will go out in the world and speak loudly and boldly. I will look in the mirror for you Every. Single. Day! Imagining you grasp my hand firmly, looking at me adoringly, and whispering in my ear “I am here.” For only when you and I join as one will I be a woman who feels like she is worthy of life, love, and happiness. “You complete me.”
A Middle-Aged Woman