I have many talents:
For instance, I can read very quickly whilst multi-tasking. I can put together creative outfits. I tell good stories. I write long letters. I could probably win a breakfast taco eating contest. I make delicious pancakes. I suspect that I might be a pretty good kisser. I look good in hats.
But there are also some negative talents to my name. And let's be honest--we all have these, the tendencies about ourselves for which we are not proud. A particular one of mine is that when I have to speak in front of a great number of people I get very nervous (in case you didn't know, I am actually quite shy), and consequently I talk incessantly and somewhat over-lightly (if that's a word). This past weekend I co-chaired a conference and at its conclusion I had to speak at the awards ceremony and thank the many sponsors. In my nervousness I managed to say, when thanking the bagel supplier: "Incidentally, did anyone manage to have one of the rosemary bagels? Because I had one and it was just about divine. In fact, I had three." And I went on a mini-spiel about these rosemary bagels. Just like that, my face burning with embarrassment.
But there's a darker talent of mine, I'm afraid, of which I feel compelled to confess. I was reminded of this specific "talent" of mine on Saturday night when several of the Jackobsen committee members, their significant others, and myself and my significant other went to George's, a small bar up the street from the IMU where the conference had taken place. In a nutshell? I drank too much, one of my co-chairs drank too much, and he thought it would be permissible to kiss me when were smoking a drunk cigarette outside. Instead of slapping him across the face, I made the mistake of feeling sorry for him, and when we went inside I continued to be nice--and by nice, I mean drunk-Lauren nice--to him. Instead of standing up for myself, I called Zach drunkenly and asked him what it was about me that makes it seem okay for men to take advantage of me in such a manner. I cried, and I drank more.
What's the "talent" here? I simply do not stand up for myself. I convince myself that these things are my fault and that I deserve them. Well, that's just absurd. And, it ends now. This type of self-loathing, this compete lack of self-worth, I can do without. I deserve better from my self.