We all long for love.
And at twenty, when you want love, but haven’t found it, you want to make it happen. You, unlovable you, could train someone else to love you. Has it always been this way? Were you always so hideous, so disgusting, that nobody has ever wanted you, even a little bit?
And there you go, practicing your smile in the mirror, wishing your teeth were whiter or more aligned. You wash your hair with the nice shampoo, and wear outfits you pulled off of mannequins, and spritz perfume so that someone walking past you on the street will fall in love with you and your scent for just a moment. You take a thousand pictures of the same moment and hate yourself in all of them, hating your posture, your smile, your hair. Wondering how anyone was supposed to love you when you were yourself.
And at twenty, maybe you haven’t found someone to love you yet, not in the way you want. And you keep practicing. You listen to your laugh, tame it, make it pleasing to the ear. You find funny jokes, clever lines, interesting facts so that you may one day be loved for your witty intellect. You pick a skill and practice, practice, practice until you are so good you can do it while you sleep, just so that you can pretend you are naturally gifted, and naturally impress.
And there you go, your smile dimmer, your laugh dulled, your words someone else’s thoughts so that maybe, in someone else’s eyes, you are someone worth loving. You are a perfectly practiced existence, waiting for love, any at all, to befall you.
But you are not a thing meant to simply exist. You are bright, and loving, and so full of life that flowers bloom where you step. Your love is not a performance, and you are not an actor. All you have to do is have faith that they will love you just the way you are. All you have to do is trust that they will want to stay with you. All you have to do is love.
And love is to rest.