We all want to be loved.
Love My Way by The Psychedelic Furs (1982) is one of the few songs I relish listening to from the very start to the very end. I’d like to think it’s because I’ve held my share of mallets as a former percussionist, but let’s get real–the song is simply gorgeous. From start to finish. It wasn’t until this year that I learned lead singer Richard Butler wrote it for a friend of his who was struggling to come out as gay. If you didn’t know that either, I highly suggest giving it a deeper listen while savoring the lyrics:
When it comes to this song and enjoying it on any level, I’ll say this: If you’re at a place in life where you feel out of step, there’s something here for you. There’s a certain magic and a sense of possibility. Maybe you’re the sensitive one, the distracted one, the one who always has to wait for life to happen. Maybe you’re having to wait for things to fall into place in multiple areas simultaneously, for a short time or for years at a time. You’re not alone.
I moderate the ’80s Design group on Facebook (we’d love to have you if you’d like to join), and as you can imagine, it’s a place where nostalgia is greatly celebrated. There are so many things I loved about the 1980s, but it was also a time when I was young and still figuring out who I was.
The older you get, the better you get to know yourself. There was a time in my adult life when I would dream about going back to those awkward elementary and middle school years with the knowledge I have now. I wouldn’t care so much about what other people thought, I’d have an added confidence that would catch people off guard. I’d listen better, talk better, dress better. And fully enjoy the experience.
I’m in another season of life now, very consumed by adulthood, motherhood, and moving into a more carefree existence after a harrowing pandemic experience (all politics aside, for many of us who are sensitive, this has been an incredibly difficult time).
Without getting too personal, I’ll share that this year I’ve felt very out of step as I’m back “out in the world” after a few years of turning inward. It’s a bit like starting over. Meeting new people, feeling awkward and inadequate, feeling like there are parts of myself that nobody should see, because they’d then decide I’m not worth spending time on.
I’ve greatly reconsidered the “story” I’ve been writing in my head–the one about the girl who goes back in time and revisits her favorite decade, complete with wisdom beyond her years and a confidence that can’t be explained. I’m not talking about replacing hope with a defeatist attitude. I’m talking about accepting ourselves for who we are.
I’m sensitive, and I can be very awkward. Sometimes I care a little too much about what people think. I want to belong but sometimes it’s hard for me to let go when I’m out of my comfort zone. There are times I greatly doubt myself. I want to be loved.
At the core, have I always been this person? Will I always be this person to some degree?
There is hope in acceptance, and there is hope in surrender.
So for today, I encourage you to accept where you are. Wherever that is. And to surrender yourself to the things you love. Cloudy days, creating, throwing yourself into art, moving without abandon. Whatever it is that connects you to yourself, nobody can touch that. Own it. Be proud of it, and return to it when you feel like you’re out of step. Be okay with being out of step. Some people will pass you by, but those who are walking at your pace will find you, just where you are.
You can never win or lose if you don’t run the race.