Standing In The Light

I can’t remember having an intimate relationship that felt “normal”. I’ve always segregated areas of my life and deemed romantic relationships separate from friendships. I never brought boyfriends around my friends and I would make fun of females who did. It never dawned on me that this wasn’t normal; I was just living life the way I’d seen it.

Growing up we weren’t allowed to be “friends with our parents”. Laughter was scarce and expectations were high. Friends and connection were a not priority and respect was a must. I never fully connected with anyone in my life. I was just floating making sure I said and did the proper things, respecting my elders, and just trying to stay out the way. I didn’t come home and share my story about how a boy in my 7th-grade class was clowning around in class and got kicked out. I didn’t dare to listen to a grown-up conversation or laugh at a grown-up joke. I had to know my place and for as long as I knew, that place was in my bedroom out of sight and out of the way.

As I got older, this manifested in searching for love in all the wrong places. Getting tied to people who weren’t intimately yoked and being bound to living in the shadows. As I got older the disconnection became more severe. I remember feeling like I was always screaming on the inside by my voice couldn’t escape. I didn’t understand how what I wanted deep down wasn’t manifesting in my reality. I wanted true love, true connection but I had no idea how to attain it.

It’s funny what staying in the shadows can teach out about the light. It teaches you that you aren’t worthy enough to shine and if you shine too brightly people will evade you. I never intended to come out of the shadows, after all, I was just doing what I was taught. I remember the day my soul screamed it wanted more. The day the inner turmoil started and how my insides ROARED! That little tiny voice had enough of being trapped that it escaped in a loud screech I WANT MOOOORRREE! I had enough of the shadows and I wanted to bask in the light.

Ideally, it seems so easy to just stand in the light, right? It has been the hardest thing to do in my entire life. Standing in the light, choosing to be seen has been difficult, to say the least. Fostering healthy connections have been a struggle. Being authentic feels like the most inauthentic thing I’ve ever done. It wasn’t until I met my boyfriend that I realized you can have joy in relationships. At first, his light scared me, his joy made me uncomfortable, but it also sparked this curiosity in me that I couldn’t shake.

It’s taken me a year to scratch the surface of this foreign thing called intimacy. The other morning we were laying in bed and it hit me, I’ve never been in the most uncomfortable, but comfortable relationship in my life. I never knew that two romantically connected people could also be friends. We could spend our time together not hating each other’s guts. I never knew that it was possible to have someone who can I laugh with, cry with, make love to, run errands with, chit-chat with all in the same person. Quite frankly I’ve never found that in anyone. It’s nice to allow the sun to shine on you and not run from it. It’s nice to have someone who wants to shine with you, and not be intimidated by how luminous you are. I never thought I’d be the girl that wants to talk about her relationship all the time. I never wanted to seem “pressed” or all consumed. But I am realizing it’s ok to be happy, to find someone who adds to your joy; it’s ok to share happy stories. It’s ok to stand in the light.

Xo- Krystal A Phillips

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