Your Story Counts
I tend to think that we place a lot of unreasonable expectations upon ourselves. We think we need to look a certain way, speak a certain way, wear a certain type of clothes and drive a particular type of car. We think we need to have the "right" evolution in our lives: college, dating, career, engagement, marriage, house, dog, babies...
Once we find ourselves in a certain "mold"... then we have a new set of expectations. I am a CrossFit coach, nutrition coach, mentor , writer and vegan. My set of guidelines includes things like:
Must be fit.
Must have below 18% body fat
Must eat only kale.
Must have shit together.
Must only ever be happy (and if you write about not being happy- you're being a real downer)
Must feel amazing all of the time or adversely must be deficient in protein/B12.
Let me set the record straight;
I suppose I am somewhat fit, though I don't have anywhere near 18% body fat and I definitely don't eat much kale. (Sorry) My shit is somewhat toegther in multiple aspects of my life, but in others, it's strewn across the floor. And while I don't believe I am deficient in protein or B12, I don't actually feel amazing all of the time... and I certainly am not always happy.
But here's the thing- the thing I wanted to say today:
Just because I want to write about REAL things... just because I want to share trials or insecurities or bouts of depression doesn't mean I am not writing to inspire. (But it may mean I am not fitting the mold I expected myself to fit.)
Because life, no matter how grateful I am, no matter how much I understand that everything happens FOR me, no matter how much I see the divine in all that I do-
Life can sometimes be really fucking hard.
People can pull the rug out from underneath you.
You can not want to get out of bed some days and have absolutely no idea why.
Money may be really tight and you might not know where your bills are coming from this month.
You might gain pounds.
You may relapse.
Someone you love may walk away from you before you were ready for them to.
And so the inspiration in writing about these things isn't to (as my mentor Karen Kenney would say) build an alter to our suffering, but to build a safe house where we all can sit around each other and share the two words that hold more relief than any other words I have ever stumbled upon.... "Me too."
Because when we understand our pain is not unique- when we understand that someone else has been through what we are going through, or is in it, but sees the light- well then we get to see the light too. Then we get to know that we aren't alone, that this too shall pass... and that there is nothing wrong with saying out loud, "I'm having a difficult time... but this is what I'm learning."
So I will continue to share THOSE stories... the true ones.... in an effort to remind us all that in every period of pain there is overcoming. That we are as happy as we decide to be...but that there will be days when it doesn't feel like a choice, and that's okay, too.
And mostly in an effort to be as authentic and accepting of my journey and my story as I possibly can be- so that you can be the same with yours. ALL of our stories are important- not just the ones that have happy endings, but the ones that are still in the messy in-between. So my commitment to you, as a writer and as a seeker in this coming year is of that: authenticity and acceptance of whatever the in-between looks like.
And an extension of love to remind you that if you have no one else you feel like you can share your story with, share it here. It is worthy of being told. <3