Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Born this way

A few weeks ago, Joe and I saw Lady Gaga on SNL where she performed "Born This Way."

And wow, I can't unsee some of the things I saw.  Bizarre is just the beginning of it, in my humble opinion.

But I like the song.

And even though I don't live an alternative lifestyle, I love the self-acceptance in it.

A few Fridays ago, I was on the phone with my mom.  It wasn't an easy conversation - in fact, it was pretty horrible in a lot of ways.  I left the conversation with swollen eyes and feeling VERY upset.

One of the big topics of conversation was how I just didn't fit with my family.  We had a very distant aunt, cold grandparents, and a grandmother who we visited maybe 5 times in my life.  Because my father was not able to interact in socially acceptable ways, he scared off many of my mom's friends.  My father was distant, my mother was hovering and although a great lady, we just never clicked.   And as hard as it is to say it, it's even harder to hear your mom on the other end of the line agree with you.

I never really felt like I belonged.  When every one else is happy in their own dysfunction, and you're the odd man out, you learn to adapt.  But you never quite forget that you don't belong - not fully.

Maybe that's the reason I want to be married to Joe - to feel like I belong to something greater than myself.  Something that is wonderful with the promise of forever.  

But that doesn't really exist, does it?  Belonging forever.  Things happen, freak accidents occur and people simply change their minds.  A ring is the promise of a hope of forever, but not a guarantee.  What's more, if I switch from looking for my worth in my parents to looking for worth in a union with Joe, is that really any healthier?

So, I can start to see myself as someone who is worthy of good things - someone who may not have belonged to her family fully, but someone who is good just the way she is.

I'm quirky.  I'm smart, I'm funny.  The fact that I didn't really fit with my family growing up doesn't mean that I don't deserve love.  No matter what your faith, I think we can all agree that we're brought into this life innocent, full of hope, and worthy of love.

Maybe that's why I really like the song that I referenced above and the message that there wasn't (and isn't) anything wrong with me.


And in case you're wondering, yes...I did add this to my running mix.

--Excerpt form "Born This Way" by Lady Gaga
My mama told me when I was young
We are all born superstars
She rolled my hair and put my lipstick on
In the glass of her boudoir
"There's nothing wrong with loving who you are"
She said, "'Cause He made you perfect, babe"
"So hold your head up girl and you'll go far,
Listen to me when I say"
I'm beautiful in my way
'Cause God makes no mistakes
I'm on the right track, baby
I was born this way
Don't hide yourself in regret
Just love yourself and you're set
I'm on the right track, baby
I was born this way


Auntie Mandy said...

It is really hard when you don't feel like you belong in your family. I know that I get upset at my cousin because she means more to me than I do to her, but then I remember, HER LOSS!

turleybenson said...

Yes, leather baby bump...stirrups with gold glitter...burned in my brain.

This is interesting. I spent my whole life feeling misunderstood, not only in my family, but in almost every other social circle. I knew people loved me, but I never felt fully accepted for me...until Mike. And I personally think that's a totally legit reason to want to get married--assuming that person does make you feel accepted and like you "belong." Obviously there are no guarantees in forever, but I think even having known that you can feel that way, you will never want to settle for less after that, don't you? And I think that's something. I don't think we were meant to live life alone, and having someone who feels like home...that might be everything, actually.

Brittany said...

I've really started to love this song! We have to be true to who we are and authentic-- no matter what other people think and feel!

Janell said...

LGaga's entire new album/cd wtf is fantastic. Listen to "Bad Kids"...
And I am old!!!
I can totally relate to your post. I never felt like I fit in with my family so I branched out. Sometimes we have to find mother figures elsewhere and father figures who give shit since so many don't appear to (give one).
My mom loves my sister more and they hang out. In Hawaii with my mom, she flipped out at me. OF course I didn't blog about it. I said "why don't we just agree to disagree!?" This -- I said to a LCSW. Physician heal thyself.
Listen to her entire album. Of course I downloaded it for 99 cents. But I know the added mixes on her album that you actually pay for are supposed to be fantastic. Most of "gaga's" (if I may be so bold) album is for your running pleasure (or dancing or singing or not necessarily fitting into the family you were born into) music.

Kelty said...

That must have been a struggle. But I love your attitude. You are definitely worthy of love!

Paul V. said...

"And even though I don't live an alternative lifestyle, I love the self-acceptance in it."

Can I just - politely - ask: please don't use phrases like "alternative lifestyle" or "lifestyle choice", because really - what does that mean? I know you meant no harm using it - and I know it's been ingrained in our vernacular.

I'm just speaking as gay man, who has seen my humanity reduced to phrases like "chosen lifestyle". We're human first, gay or straight second. It's not a lifestyle, it's a life - ya know?

Having said all that, I think it's so wonderful you now feel understood, and loved, and felt the same great message in Gaga's song too :)
- http://www.BornThisWayBlog.com

Lanie Painie said...

I just heard this song for the first time at a church event over the weekend. For realz! And I love it.

I've always been proud not to "fit in" with my family. Try it. It's SO freeing! Seriously - if you didn't share DNA with these people, would you care if they accepted you? Would you WANT them to consider you a part of their circle, or would you be running away as fast as possible?

To them, your lifestyle of self-inquiry IS alternative.

Also, Weid Al just released his video "I perform this way" and it's really worth seeing the video.