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Don’t Change

December 14, 2011

A few months ago, a guy I know asked a group of women what the best compliment a guy could give them was. The responses varied; some focused on physical appearance, others on personality or accomplishments. I didn’t answer, but it made me think, and has returned to my mind on several occasions since then.

I think I’ve finally decided on an answer:

“Don’t change.”

One thing I’ve realized in the last year is that my romantic relationships have been a series of attempts to be someone who I’m not. I so strongly value(d?) being needed that I would change who I was to suit the needs of the person I was with. Except trying to be someone you’re not is dangerous in a relationship, because it’s not sustainable – and if they don’t like the real you, you’re not going to have a very happy “ever after.”

So to find someone who needs – or wants – me exactly as I am would be the best thing I could ask for in a relationship.

Because something else I’ve realized, more in the last two months than the last year, is that I really like myself. I like who I am, and I don’t want to be anyone else.

Sarah Barreilles is one of my favorite singer-song writers, and one song of hers in particular has been on all my playlists lately.

King of Anything by Sarah Barreilles

Oh (oh oh oh)
Oh (oh oh oh)
Oh (oh oh oh)
Oh (oh oh oh)

Keep drinkin’ coffee
Stare me down across the table
While I look outside

So many things I’d say if only I were able
But I just keep quiet
And count the cars that pass by

You’ve got opinions, man
We’re all entitled to ’em
But I never asked

So let me thank you for time
And try to not waste any more of mine
Get out of here fast

I hate to break it to you babe
But I’m not drowning
There’s no one here to save

Who cares if you disagree
You are not me
Who made you king of anything
So you dare tell me who to be
Who died
And made you king of anything

Oh (oh oh oh)
Oh (oh oh oh)
Oh (oh oh oh)
Oh (oh oh oh)

You sound so innocent
All full of good intent
You swear you know best

But you expect me to
Jump up on board with you
Ride off into your dellusional sunset

I’m not the one who’s lost
With no direction oh
But you won’t ever see

You’re so busy makin’ maps
With my name on them in all caps
You got the talkin’ down just not the listening

And who cares if you disagree
You are not me
Who made you king of anything
So you dare tell me who to be
Who died
And made you king of anything

All my life
I’ve tried
To make everybody happy while I
Just hurt
And hide
Waitin’ for someone to tell me it’s my turn
To decide

Oh (oh oh oh)
Oh (oh oh oh)
Oh (oh oh oh)
Oh (oh oh oh)

Who cares if you disagree
You are not me
Who made you king of anything
So you dare tell me who to be
Who died
And made you king of anything

Who cares if you disagree
You are not me
Who made you king of anything
So you dare tell me who to be
Who died
And made you king of anything

Let me hold your crown, babe
Oh oh
Ah

(also, I’m fairly certain she stole some of my white girl dance moves in that video.)

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