How To Find Your Own Real Life Peter Kavinsky
Spoiler alert: If you haven't seen the movie "To All The Boys I've Loved Before" on Netflix, STOP READING RIGHT NOW and go do that. Then come back so we can chat about how obsessed we both are with everything TATBILB.
Right now, the entire world has heart-shaped glasses and butterflies in our bellies, and all we see is Peter Kavinsky. And rightfully so. He's funny, charming, sensitive, and most importantly, he's fallen hard for Lara Jean Covey. The girl we can all see pieces of ourselves in.
This post, however, should actually be titled "How to have your own real life Peter Kavinsky find YOU," not the other way around.
If you remember correctly, the only thing Lara Jean really did to land herself a Peter K was write a letter that was meant to be read by no one; not a single soul. Everything that happened after that was the result of her just doing her thing (and a sneaky little sister doing hers.)
So we've got to ask, what was "her thing" that made Peter K, King of the Cafeteria, fall hard for our favorite wallflower?
I think I have an idea, (well, seven ideas, to be precise.) And its not because I've seen the movie four (ahem...six) times or anything...okay, yes. Yes it is.
7 Tips from Lara Jean on how to find your own real life Peter Kavinsky (Or Have Him Find You):
1. Lara Jean is Lara Jean, not Gen.
The Peter Ks of the world are totally over the Gens of the world. Remember when Peter told LJ "Gen's gorgeous and all, but your style is way better"? He didn't actually care about fashion. What stood out to him about Lara Jean was that she didn't just wear things because they are cool and common, she wore them because she loved them. She was brave with her style and didn't just try to fit in.
But if I'm being honest, I've been a Gen before. Have you? We are Gens when we try to look like the people in magazines or on Instagram. When we wear Ugg boots (or ugh boots, as our BFF Chris would say) not because we looooove Ugg boots, but because everyone is wearing Ugg boots and we want to fit in. (Nothing against Uggs; if you LOVE them, rock them!)
Lara Jean tip #1:
Take risks and have fun figuring out YOUR style, and OWN it instead of trying to just look like everyone else and play it safe. Confidence and courage look fantastic on you, girl. Safety and the status quo are so last season. Your Peter will pick you out from a crowd because you were brave enough to own who you really are, and rock it, from the scrunchy on your head to the vintage Etsy boots on your feet.
2. Lara Jean doesn't lose herself over love.
So many times when I was dating a boy, I would lose myself in the process. If he was a jock, suddenly I loved sports. If he was a rocker, suddenly I loved emo bands. I got to a point where I hardly even knew who I was, because who I was always changed based off of who I was dating. I molded myself around who I thought I should be in order for some guy to like me.
But not our Lara Jean.
On the high school ski trip, any other girl would have been chasing Peter out into the snow, wanting him to "teach" her how to snowboard. But Lara Jean had no interest in snowboarding, and she had no interest in pretending to like it, either. Instead, she brought books she planned to read by the fire while everyone else flirted with each other to stay warm out in the cold. And although a friend did end up encouraging her to go find Peter in the hot tub later that night (and the greatest scene in the history of rom coms was born out of it), I think him being so intrigued by her was partially due to the fact that she wasn't attached to his hip, and not being able to quite figure her out because of it.
Lara Jean tip #2:
Don't pretend to like things or be something you're not just for a boy. Its okay if you don't like all the same things as him. Your Peter doesn't want to date himself, he wants to date you. So don't lose yourself in the process. When we don't lose ourselves, our real life Peter doesn't lose interest.
3. Lara Jean (eventually) Learns Real Life is Better.
With a little love-nudge from her dad, Lara Jean stops staying cooped up in her house and actually starts putting romance novels down and living her own romance story. Maybe we aren't wrapped up in books all day, but we are wrapped up in social media and Netflix all day.
Real life boys are different, though. They aren't fed lines that make us melt into puddles at their feet, and they don't get a chance to re-do the scene to get it just right. They are just real; with insecurities and doubts like anyone else.
When we fall in love with characters in movies, it makes it hard to fall in love with real people, because they'll never measure up. Because boys in movies can't break our hearts, only real boys can. But boys in movies also can't actually love us, only real boys can. So, just like Lara Jean learned, we have to be willing to let real people in, even if it means we could get hurt, because love is always worth the risk.
Lara Jean tip #3:
Love stories are the best... just make sure you don't get so caught up in the stories other people write that you forget to write your own. Your real Peter K might be right under your nose, you just have to lift your head up away from the screen in order to see him.
4. Lara Jean skips the small talk.
One of Peter's daily notes to Lara Jean said "I like that we can talk about real stuff." It doesn't matter who you are, how confident you seem, or how many walls you've built up around yourself, we all want to feel known whether we are willing to admit it or not.
Lara Jean is brave to ask Peter so many questions about his dad leaving and his feelings about it. But instead of shying away from the questions or feeling like she was being nosy, it made him fall even more in love with her. *Siiigh*
Sometimes we stay surface-level with people and just stick to small talk because we are afraid they'll get mad, or things will get awkward if we ask real questions about real life. But all it takes is for one person to be brave and vulnerable enough to ask the real stuff. And thats when relationships grow. Thats when people fall in love.
Lara Jean tip #4:
Ask the hard questions. Get your real Peter to talk about his real heart. Because when the next day comes around and he's alone thinking about his real life, he'll think of you and how you made him feel more real and more known then anyone has in a really long time. And then he'll drive across town to buy you your favorite Korean yogurt. Trust me on this one.
5. Lara Jean does hard things, even when she's scared.
Peter tells Lara Jean that he likes how she’s not afraid of Gen. But LJ quickly corrects him, letting him know she is actually terrified of Gen. At which point Peter rephrases his statement, “Well, you’re not afraid to stand up to her.”
And that right there my friends, is the whole entire thing. She was terrified of Gen, but stood up for herself anyway.
Confidence is sexy. And courage is choosing to act in confidence, even if you don’t feel it.
Lara Jean tip #5:
Try hard things. Go outside of your comfort zone because you know it will make YOU the best version of yourself. Chances are, while you’re busy slaying life, your Peter will observe you from a distance and think “whatever that girl has goin’ on, I just want to be a part of it.”
6. Lara Jean makes a big deal, out of big deals.
Our sweet and sassy LJ tells Peter kissing is off the table in their contract, because she wants all of her firsts, including kissing, to be special and real. Even if to Peter kissing is no biggie and a given in any relationship, she sticks to her guns.
It was those very standards, that made Peter have to get creative with his romantic gestures. Ladies, if he could have just kissed her in the middle of the cafeteria, we would have never had that monumental hand-in-back-pocket-with-the-epic-spin scene. You know, the scene we all rewound and watched 24 times in a row? (No? Just me?)
After they do share their first real I-actually-really-like-you kiss in the hot tub, she tells him ”I know physical stuff might not be a big deal to you, but it’s a big deal to me.” We could all use a little more of that #girlishvigor courage she had to stick to her guns and not compromise her values for a guy.
Lara Jean Tip #6:
You will stand out to your Peter for having the self-worth and courage to stick to your guns when it comes to your values. Sometimes boys forget that we are queens. We are queens and sticking your hand in our back pocket is a privilege, not a right. The more we gently remind them we are queens with our high standards of care and caution, the more they'll treat us like one. PLUS the more we encourage their creative juices to flow in being romantic in outside-of-the-box ways because of our standards on physical stuff, the more the Peter K within them will come out.
7. Lara Jean refuses to be second best.
As soon as LJ starts to develop real feelings for Peter, and thinks she is just second best, thats when she wants out of the contract. She wasn't willing to just live in a fantasy world where he was her "boyfriend" but he really he wanted someone else.
She put her foot down. And that was what made him finally tell her "you were never second best," and ultimately, that he was in love with her.
Lara Jean Tip #7
Don't be second best. If he's not willing to tell you to your face that "you were never second best", and follow it up with his actions, get out, sister. And that bit about following it up with his actions -- thats important, too. I can't tell you how many times boys told me I was number one, but their actions told me otherwise. You deserve to be number one for your guy, and if you're not, then thats not your Peter.
Don't settle for anyone but your Peter K. You just have to do your thing, like Lara Jean did hers, and its precisely your thing that will make him see you and fall hard for you.
When I finally learned who I was and how to be myself always, no matter who I was with, thats when I found my Peter. And let me tell you, its better than any movie. Because its real.