Some bring out

"Hallie, you need to stop dating assholes."

"Yeah, it's like I attract them or something..." I said.

"No, you're attracted to them," he replied upset. "You need to understand your worth."

It's good to have friends that aren't afraid to be honest with you. In the good...and ugly moments.

The kind of friend that smiles at you while you're on stage doing comedy for the first time. Encouraging you to keep going. And the kind of friend who tells you he wants to be the first person you smoke pot with while listening to records.

That's Jeff.

He's the friend that texts you at 1am asking you to move to Vegas with him or asking what your ring size is so he can propose.

He's the type of friend that will support you in whatever decision you make, but be honest about his opinions.

It's been a breath of fresh air.

Jeff is the person who made me realize something very important in my life.

People bring out different aspects of my personality.

Some bring out my seriousness. The conversations are business-focused.

Some bring out my anxiety and stress.

Some bring out my ability to lead or follow.

But most importantly, some bring out my humor. I feel safe and my intuition thrives. I'm able to make jokes easily, be playful, and safe. It's a high. It's freeing.

I didn't realize that before.

I didn't realize that's what I needed to look for when making friends or dating.

I didn't realize that I needed to check my gut and ask, "What is this person bringing out of me?"

Is it positive qualities I like about myself? Or the opposite?

Am I reactive? Triggered? Stressed? Controlling?

Or am I goofy? Playful? Creative? Endearing? Calm?

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Then I'm back.

A cool breeze brushes my face on my morning run. Then I'm back in Tenessee. Going on my morning run near our apartment. I feel the same cool breeze. Feel the same emotions. Depression. Pressure. And h

It's too good to be true.

To have these moments. Leave a self-defense class. More and more confident each week. Wearing my nice yoga pants. Drive to my mom's to drop off fresh pears from the farmer's market. We rest. On rockin

How do I know

That I'm me? I feel creative I want to write Or cook Or make jokes Or learn I'm not exhausted, obsessive, or anxious That's how I know.