I caught a glimpse of myself the other night and this is what I saw: fear.
My mom has always warned me that I come from a long line of worriers. I used to pride myself on not being one, I don't know anymore. I feel like my mother-worry has just super-skyrocketed this year. And I don't know exactly what it means or how to make it stop.
I caught a glimpse of myself the other night and this was what I saw: an anxious heart.
I lay here awake going over yesterday in my mind. All the times I got so caught up in the what we needed to do that I forgot the why I am even doing this in the first place. The times I did not show gentleness or self-control. The times I got overwhelmed and yelled.
I caught a glimpse of myself the other morning and this is what I saw: shame
I took a long hard look at myself in the mirror, I saw everything that isn't right, and isn't the way I'd like it to look. I caught a glimpse of myself and this is what I saw: insecurity
But sometimes, in an encouraging text or an unhurried conversation, my friends hold up a portrait of me - they tell me how they see me. They encourage me to keep moving forward and keep pressing onwards and that what I'm doing and saying and who I am matters to them and to anybody else who cares to take a step into this square of space I'm living in.
Life is complicated- joy and sorrow, laughter and tears all occupy the same space. They show no respect for one another, they get all up in each other's space, they can't visit one at a time, they squeeze their wide hips into the same chair and we sit together.
I am complicated, a mess of stress, postpartum hormones and trying to raise teens (and homeschool-preschool kicking my butt) and I feel like I'm just stumbling through.
But tonight I caught a glimpse of myself. Messy and imperfect and deeply flawed and yet precious (and so are you) I hope I am someone that I would want to be friends with. I hope I speak the words to myself that I'd say to my best friends. I hope I am the friend I would want my friend to be to me.
I'm terrible at ending blog posts. I don't know if you have ever noticed that about me. Sometimes I have drafts of posts sitting there for weeks because I haven't thought of a good ending for them. So tonight I'll just say:
To you, whoever you are, reading this right now: You are precious. You are so loved, even if you don't feel like it now. You are so beautiful, even if you don't see it now. You have so much potential, more than you even realize. What you do with your life matters, right where you are, even if it feels like nobody sees or cares. Your words matter. The example you are setting matters. Your imperfection doesn't define you, your scars don't mar your beauty. You have so much to offer. Don't give up.
I don't remember where I read this, feel free to send me an email if you read this too, but I remember reading about a woman who caught a glimpse of herself in a wall of mirrors, she didn't recognize that it was her reflection and at first stepped toward the reflection as if she were moving towards a friend. She caught a glimpse of herself and it was a very meaningful moment for her. She began to shift her conscious thought towards the idea "I am my friend" and it made an impact on the tone of her self-talk, or inner monologue or whatever. That was what I was thinking of as I wrote this.