On Christmas Eve last year I was talking to one of my aunts as we were getting ready for the annual dinner party. She helped me with my shirt collar and my tie (the second time in my adult life I wore a suit). We took turns fussing in-front of the mirror, pulling at this thread and that, tucking in a hair here, brushing down another one there and just having a gran’ ol’ time. As our conversations seem to go, we got chatting about our love lives (or rather lack thereof), and she stopped and said,
“I wish he could see me like this.” High heels, black dress, coiffed.
That statement grabbed me, forcing me to see its depth, to embrace its profundity. I replied,
“I wish she could see me like this.” Suited up and polished, dapper AF.
Those simple words pretty much summed up what we were both, I imagine, feeling at the time, our shared experience as far as our (un)romantic (nonexistent) relationships were concerned.
Silently, secretly, “I wish he could see how beautiful I am. I wish he would acknowledge me.”
Secretly, silently, “I wish she could see how beautiful I am. I wish she would love me.”
Whenever I find myself doubtful about a person’s thoughts or feelings, I remind myself of that moment, and I remind myself it is not up to me to make them see me how I want to be seen. That would be manipulative. The best you can do is be completely honest and open and allow people to come to their own conclusions. You can only do (show?) so much. And, ultimately, there is nothing wrong with not being seen, not being recognized by other people. We do not cease to be who we are, become less valuable, because no one has acknowledged us. There is an elegance and serenity in being lost within the noise and the humdrum of life and living, living lost until the ones who can see do see. You may as well enjoy the silence.