Why do I have this blog? Basically, because I want to. A lot of things I write, I don’t publish. Not yet. I’m hoping that someday soon, I will be brave enough to show my heart and soul, but for now, know that I’m working on it- and consider yourself warned- there is a lot of vulnerability ahead.
Right now Brene Brown and Glennon Doyle Melton are some of my favorite people. If you haven’t read their books, please go do it right now. They speak a lot about being gentle with yourself, with your beautiful fragile heart. Writing reminds me to be gentle. It reminds me that I need to be loving and kind with my own heart and the hearts around me. It allows me to write down angry thoughts, feel those emotions and then let them go and move on with my life.
I’m rereading Brene Brown’s newest book- Rising Strong. She has some phrases that are wonderful and difficult and true and I love them. For example, “I want to be brave with my life”. It sounds simple. It’s terrifying- to be brave. Brown writes, “There are too many people today who instead of feeling hurt are acting out their hurt; instead of acknowledging pain, they’re inflicting pain on others. Rather than risking feeling disappointed, they’re choosing to live disappointed. Emotional stoicism is not badassery”.
I stay home all day with three small people who are constantly struggling with hurt, pain and disappointment. If I can’t personally feel those emotions, how in the world can I expect them to work through those emotions. They are terrifying to me most of the time, how much scarier are they to someone so small?
I know this is turning into an essay about Brene Brown’s book, but hey, my blog, my choice. I am learning to be brave. I am learning to put myself out there. I struggle with this- “During the process of rising, we sometimes find ourselves homesick for a place that no longer exists. We want to go back to that moment before we walked into the arena, but there’s nowhere to go back to”.
For me, the moment would be before I quit my job, before we moved to Denver, before we cut our income in half, moved into a small apartment and left behind everything we knew. But now, I have left that place, I have stepped outside of my comfort zone, and I can never go back to that life. I consistently wonder, should we have left? Should we have given up financial security, comfortable houses and jobs? When we moved to Denver, everything in my life flipped upside down. I was good at my job, I had measurements to gauge whether or not I was successful, I had a paycheck. There are days where I pull out my resume and decide that I need to go back to work. That staying home is too hard, that my life had more value when I was working outside of the home. I know in my heart that raising small humans is important, that it’s valuable, that it’s better for them to have someone who desperately loves them living life with them. To be clear, I’m not saying that everyone should stay home with their children. I’m saying that for me, this is my brave, letting go of living my life centered around financial security and instead living with my family as my most important value. Understand this- I am not saying ANYONE else is focused on money more than family. I am saying that to me, financial security for my family became more important than my actual family. Once again, I am not saying, I am not even implying that you or your spouse/significant other/best friend/random stranger should stay home with your children. I am saying that my brave, my stepping into the arena, was staying home with my kids. It was trading financial security for waterfalls and hikes and chickens and goats. I left a plan, a guide, a clear path and am now on this crazy crazy journey.
I am still desperately trying to figure out how to be brave. “Vulnerability is not winning or losing, it’s having the courage to show up and be seen when we have no control over the outcome”. I am a perfectionist. Maybe someday soon I will write about my struggles with anxiety and acceptance, but not yet. Showing up when you have no control- that’s probably one of the most terrifying ideas to me. I really like control. I like my lists. I like to be organized. I hate surprises. Choosing to show up when I can’t control the outcome, that’s like jumping off a bridge blindfolded for me. As if jumping wasn’t scary enough, I have no clue what’s going to happen.
If you are reading this- you are wonderful, you are amazing, you are brave. You get out of bed every single day (or at least most days) and you walk into this big scary world that largely doesn’t seem to care about your beautiful heart. Look in the mirror when you get out of bed and say, “I. Am. Enough”. You be you. No one else gets to be you. No one else gets to choose for you. You do your own brave. Whatever that looks like. Whatever that feels like. You are brave.