“He wants to dream like a young man with the wisdom of an old man.
He wants his home and security. He wants to live like a sailor at sea.”
These are words from Bob Seger’s song, Beautiful Loser. A song that has had me questioning my life since I heard it in the 70s. How many of us want both sides of a coin? I have always struggled with the contradictions that have made up my life. I have to live a quiet life for my sanity but I love to get rowdy on occasion to make sure I still have a pulse. I try to take the high road during confrontation but I can get as gutter as the next guy. I hate bright lights but I’m still afraid of the dark. I hate violence but love hit man movies. I want to live near the edge but I want to also play it safe.
I never knew how to categorize myself. Good girl or bad girl. I used to believe that I could only be one or the other. But over the years I have figured out that I need both sides in order to be complete. For the most part my party days have partied on down but I still have a need to shake things up a little bit.
The contradictions were more pronounce when I was younger and trying to figure out who I was. I truly struggled with the concept of being one thing or another. I found good girl me to be rather a bore and bad girl me a bit too abrasive (especially when mixed with alcohol.) Yet I could never get the two to meet in the middle. So I would end up going off half cocked in one direction but was never happy with myself.
Humans are a complex lot. I think we all want the contradictions in life to show their faces. If we didn’t have those multiple personalities we would be one dimensional. We need all our sides in order to be real, genuine human beings. I was never more unhappy as when I was trying to be just one thing. You have to just let it go and be true to yourself.
Yes, I like my music loud but my conversations soft. I like to be a little hip while I’m being a nerd. I am learning to love both sides of me; the soft side and the harder side. They can now work together, instead of fighting one another, to make me a complete person. I no longer have to pick a side, I can adjust according to the situation and let out the appropriate me. This has allowed me to become a more real, more at ease person. I did not always like myself because I did not always approve of my own behavior. But now I have learned to embrace all the contradictions in my life. They are the color in a normally black and white world.
It’s all the experiences we encounter in life that make us who we are. I used to try and hide certain sides of me, now I love them all for I would be a very boring person without all the quirks. Yes, Mr. Seger, I will take Beautiful Loser over the alternative any day.