I’m a very special person. And I am different from the other people around me in three primary ways:
First, I always feel more than a little bit uncomfortable dancing too close to someone else, even if we’re both doing the same dance.
Second, I always want to use an emoticon at the end of every text message that I send out. This isn’t because it’s cute or sophisticated — it’s because it makes me feel like my words are going further than they would with standard text-speak. Like they’re being attached to an invisible balloon.
Third, I always have a hard time starting conversations with someone new or in a new environment, even if it’s just a friendly chat. The words feel like they’re stuck in my throat.
I’m different from most people because of the ways I feel and act — but what really makes me different is that not everyone gets the same version of me.
I have a lot of different versions of myself — but I only show them to certain people. I put them on like a set of clothes that’s different from the ones I wore yesterday.
When It Comes to Me, You Get What You Get
This isn’t because I’m trying to be unpredictable or showy. It’s just because my different versions of me feel so good — they feel right — that it feels cruel to force someone into my life who wouldn’t fit in well with my version of me.
And honestly, if you don’t like my version of me, then I’m not sure that you’re going to like me.
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Oh, How Many Versions Do You Have?
Different people get different versions of me. For example, this week I received a text message from the most amazing girl in the world (A.K.A. my version of me). She wrote to tell me that she was going out of town for three days but would be back by Friday night to hang out with me again.
This has been something that I’ve been looking forward to for a while. But I’ve also been dreading it.
I knew that if I went over to her place on Friday night, then she was going to be a lot of fun — but she would also be my more party-crazy version of me.
And right now, I really don’t want that version of me in my life. Instead, I want the most chilled-out and relaxed version of me in my life.
So I wrote back to A.K. and told her that I was going to be out of town this week, but I’d love to hang out on Friday night at my place if she felt like stopping by.
She wrote back within a minute and said that she wouldn’t miss it for the world — she’d be there around 9 PM. There would be wine, kitchen music, and a bunch of her friends coming over after the concert they’ll all be attending together.
I wrote back and told her that I’d try my best to not be out of town — but if it turns out I’m busy then I apologize in advance and will see her soon.
And then I canceled the plans I had on Friday night.
Why Did You Cancel?
I’m canceling because she’s my most party-crazy, loud, fun version of me and all the things that go with that. Because I can’t bring myself to be that version of me right now — and I don’t want to do the drinking, talking, dancing thing with that version of me.
But what really matters here is why she would want to come over in the first place.
- She likes me.
- I’m her version of me.
- It’s Friday night.
This is a recipe for disaster
And all I can think about is the things that will happen at my place on Friday night.
She’ll get too drunk, and then her friends will accuse me of being overly responsible (which is true) and she’ll have to leave because she’s too drunk to drive home.
Her friends will pressure her to drink more so that they can get more drunk, and I’ll have to walk her home which will be a total pain in the ass.
My friends will think that I’m a freak for having an ex of hers over, and it’ll be awkward when we all have to be together for a few hours.
I’m dreading this visit – but I know it’s going to be okay because she is the fun version of me. For this reason, I want to make things as easy as possible for her and myself. Once she’s drunk, I’ll be the one she’ll want to live with and stay up all night talking to — not one of her other friends.
And then when it comes time for her to leave, we can just walk home together and have a fun night on our way home.
Different Versions, Not Different People
I know that this seems like a weird concept.
- What do you mean you’re different versions of me?
- How could more than one version of me be in the same place at once?
- Why would anyone want to have so many versions of themselves in the same place at once?
The answer is: I don’t think it’s weird — and I don’t expect you to be able to understand how this works.