Last week, I was re-reading an e-mail chain from about two years ago I had with a male acquaintance. We had just met each other about 6 weeks prior and since we were both pretty busy people, e-mail was the best way for us to dialogue and learn more about one another. He thought I was intriguing; I thought he was bs’ing me. But after a while, I could tell he was really genuine. Just looking at my words and thinking back on that time in my life, I realized I was a totally different person than I am now.
Let me explain. I was innocent, slightly naive, trusting, and nice. If people picked on me, I let it slide. Now, I’m not so innocent, more cautious, and not-so-nice. When people pick on me, I pick back. I make faces when people say things I don’t like; and most importantly, I’ve been told I’m not the nice girl anymore. When I first enter into new situations, I’m quiet-almost to the point where people think I’m stuck-up or shy; the shy part is quite accurate. (Yes, it’s possible to be a shy social butterfly.) Once I get comfortable, I speak up a little more and become much more outgoing.
When it comes to my interaction with the opposite sex, especially those that I have dated in the past, depending on the circumstances, I can be a bit of an itch with bee in front of it. That’s my way to let you know you may have screwed me over because I was nice, but don’t think it’s going to happen again. And sadly, there are times when the not-so-nice Elle comes out to play with everyone. I’m a proponent of not letting the bad things that have happened with relationships in the past dictate how you behave with the new people in the future. I was telling a friend this weekend that I can see how women can allow men to make them bitter. And vice versa. When it comes to potential suitors, I really try not to come across too harsh. I may appear aloof, but sometimes that’s my defense mechanism. I wonder if my experiences made me harsh or if I’m just getting older and wiser. But something in me wants to go back to that young woman who was optimistic and happy-go-lucky when I first moved to DC two years ago. Until next time, I’m just a Southern girl…in the city.