Recently, your mother and I were searching for an answer on Google. Halfway through entering the question, Google returned a list of the most popular searches in the world. Perched at the top of the list was “How to keep him interested.”
It startled me. I scanned several of the countless articles about how to be sexy and sexual, when to bring him a beer versus a sandwich, and the ways to make him feel smart and superior.
And I got angry.
Little One, it is not, has never been, and never will be your job to “keep him interested.”
Little One, your only task is to know deeply in your soul—in that unshakeable place that isn’t rattled by rejection and loss and ego—that you are worthy of interest. (If you can remember that everyone else is worthy of interest also, the battle of your life will be mostly won. But that is a letter for another day.)
If you can trust your worth in this way, you will be attractive in the most important sense of the word: you will attract a boy who is both capable of interest and who wants to spend his one life investing all of his interest in you.
Little One, I want to tell you about the boy who doesn’t need to be keptinterested, because he knows you are interesting:
I don’t care if he puts his elbows on the dinner table—as long as he puts his eyes on the way your nose scrunches when you smile. And then can’t stop looking.
I don’t care if he can’t play a bit of golf with me—as long as he can play with the children you give him and revel in all the glorious and frustrating ways they are just like you.
I don’t care if he doesn’t follow his wallet—as long as he follows his heart and it always leads him back to you.
I don’t care if he is strong—as long as he gives you the space to exercise the strength that is in your heart.
I couldn’t care less how he votes—as long as he wakes up every morning and daily elects you to a place of honor in your home and a place of reverence in his heart.
I don’t care about the color of his skin—as long as he paints the canvas of your lives with brushstrokes of patience, and sacrifice, and vulnerability, and tenderness.
I don’t care if he was raised in this religion or that religion or no religion—as long as he was raised to value the sacred and to know every moment of life, and every moment of life with you, is deeply sacred.
In the end, Little One, if you stumble across a man like that and he and I have nothing else in common, we will have the most important thing in common:
Because in the end, Little One, the only thing you should have to do to “keep him interested” is to be you.
Your eternally interested guy,
Happy International Women’s Day
IM CRYING IN THE MIDDLE OF CLASS
I teared up. You got me.
Awww. That was beautiful, and important.
tw for vagueish description of, um. oh jeez how do i warn for this? ableist assaultish stuff?
As a person with severe and very frequent seizures, I am constantly in fear of other people’s lack of knowledge about my condition. There are a lot of epilepsy myths and whenever someone has a seizure, there is ALWAYS some self important douche that insists he/she knows what she is doing because they took a semester of nursing school in 1976. I have had seizures in public places many times (my seizures are almost daily) and I have had people try to stick dirty spoons in my mouth, their wallets, rolled up cloth napkins and all sorts of gross and dangerous things. I have had people start praying because they think I am possessed by the devil (seriously), and I have had people put me in their car and drive me to their home (which is terrifying, and sort of kidnap).
One of the worst parts about having epilepsy in my opinion is having to trust other people, usually strangers, not just because I don’t trust strangers but also because I don’t feel ok about putting a responsibility in their hands that they did not sign on for. Because my seizures are almost daily, I am almost always accompanied by my husband or a friend or assistant who knows how to deal with my condition and has agreed to do so, but I can’t be watched 24 hours a day.
This evening, I went shopping with a friend who is a bit shy and not very assertive. (She is lovely, I adore her, but she is not used to people’s reactions when I have a seizure. She did not know that there is always that one self important douche in every crowd.) I had a seizure. Of course, that one self important douche was there - a man in his late 50’s who insisted on putting something in my mouth; in this case his wallet which had a metal closure and frame that covered most of it. My friend repeatedly asked him to stop and he did not. Unfortunately, my friend was not very assertive (not her fault, she is just sweet and shy) and the guy pushed her out of the way and took over, even as she explained that you’re not supposed to do that with epileptics. He insisted that in the army in the 70’s, that’s the way it was done. My friend argued that this was not the army, nor the 70’s, but he would not listen and she kind of froze up.
The result is that I now have seven stitches in the side of my left cheek and a chipped front tooth, both caused by the man’s metal wallet cutting my face open.
Please, if you know someone with a seizure disorder, take a few minutes to learn how to deal with a seizure. It isn’t complicated and your knowing and being ready and ok with helping will relieve a lot of fear. Please take the time to pass this on, as it could save someone’s life, or at least their face.
It’s also important to remember not to hold us down. Seizures look scary (I’ve never seen what I look like having one, but I’m very aware of what happens), but holding someone down while in status epilepticus is dangerous both to you and the fitting person.
It’s far more safer to let us flail, drool everywhere and pee ourselves as is so flatteringly common, and then comfort us as we come around, explaining what happened to us.
Far too often I’ve come out of a seizure with someone who did first aid in 1980 putting their entire bodyweight on me. Let me tell you, it’s fucking terrifying. I’ve become aggressive when post-ictal, and once gave the first aid officer at my old work a job in the mouth when she wouldn’t get off me.
Someone coming out of a seizure may be unpredictable. It is far safer for you, as the bystander, and the person fitting, to simply clear the area, make sure their head is protected and then wait for them to come out of it, at which point you can reassure them.
EXTREMELY important knowledge
When I worked at my local comic/card shop, we had a teen who came in to play Magic, and he had a seizure that was horrifying for me to witness but absolutely not scary for the friend who came with him.
"Do I need to call 911?" I asked.
"No," the friend replied. "It just needs to happen."
And I went back to the counter and felt really useless, but you know what? The teen was fine, and his friend was fine, and a few weeks later when it happened again, the regulars who’d seen it happen before stopped people who hadn’t seen it before from helping because one of the regulars said, “You need 911?” And the friend said, “No,” and once again, he was right.
Moral of my story: If someone is clearly okay handling someone having a seizure, don’t fucking butt in.
I don’t usually share graphics but this one is spot on and too good to miss