Note: This is the second in a series of short posts written nearly a year ago - February 25th, 2016 - two days before my 37th birthday; the same day I started secretly writing and this blog was just a scary dream. Reading over the words again, there's not much I would change, just thankful for God-given courage, a husband who sees me greater than I do myself and prodding friends who helped me to be brave. (You can read the first post here & the third post here)
Vulnerable. Exposed. Open.
See those words up there? Those words have brought fear. When people meet me I think most would probably describe me as open and friendly - I’m sure “scared and nervous” would not be at the top of their list of adjectives. But I am afraid of being open and exposed - not being able to control who knows what about me. I guess at the heart of it, we’re probably all a bit like that, wanting to be in charge of how others perceive us. Don't you think? That’s the intrigue of our social media culture - you can create whomever you want to be and all the bad stuff can stay neatly hidden, where no one can really find it. But I also know in my heart that is no way to live.
A well-lived life requires vulnerability.
I’ve thought of starting a blog for several years and it’s those words listed above that have stopped me from moving forward - pushing through the fear. Instead I've allowed the fear to win.
If I publish my thoughts what will people think?
They’ll hold me to my goals - what if I fail?
What if it changes how people view me?
Will they like what I have to say?
Will they read it?
Are my thoughts even of value to anyone?
But these last two years have been ones of discovery for me and I lived 2016 very differently than I did 2015. I entered 2015 TIRED. I had recently given birth to our surprise baby and it changed so much about me. I was given a chance to hit pause and then rewind. I spent a winter, and then a spring living life at a much slower pace than my previous 9 frantic years. I had a chance to sit with my thoughts - even if it was in dirty yoga pants with a sleeping baby in my arms. Getting lost in one’s thoughts can bring about a whole range of emotions - for me it was regret, sadness, fear, sorrow, hope, enthusiasm, energy, reflection.
At the end of it all I’ve decided that I'm tired of running from the hard things - I want to return to living daily with fullness, but no longer will I beat myself up over what I THINK I should be. I want to live out who God uniquely created me to be.
I want to keep reaching but be ok when I can’t...quite...make...it.
Grace. I'm willing to give myself GRACE.