I'm one of those people that needs to get stuff off my chest from time to time. I should mention that this chest of which I speak is (still) gainfully employed -- I'm nursing my almost 3-year old daughter and have two older, but still small children who each weaned near their 4th birthdays. My journey to and through motherhood and otherhood has roused the deep and dark within me, and this was supposed to be the place where I got it all off my chest ... but I've been a blogging failure.
Thursday, December 09, 2010
December 8 – Beautifully Different.
Think about what makes you different and what you do that lights people up. Reflect on all the things that make you different – you’ll find they’re what make you beautiful.
See, I don't really consider myself beautiful. Oh, I've been told that I have a great smile, there are people who think my impossibly dark and curly hair is gorgeous. Some say I have a "put together" style of dressing, which is a positive thing, I suppose. But, as I learned in the last 18 or so months, I've had a serious dearth of "mirrors" throughout my life. I've lacked those solid, reliable people in my life that can accurately reflect ME back to ME.
That's not to say I have no one ... to the contrary, I have many, many amazing friends in my world. Well let me back up a second. My life is full of people. Full. If I tried to count my interactions each day, I'm sure my brain would explode by 10 a.m. (and I don't like to get up before 8:30). But, I've noticed throughout my life that, somehow, people either ADORE me or they ABHOR me. There doesn't seem to be a middle ground with me. Therefore, I have very few "acquaintances" because the people on the "she's all right" side of the fence actually seem to think "she's awesome!" and we become friends. Conversely, there are a lot of people over there on the "what a bitch" side of the fence. And, try as I might to fight this, they take my power. They stick me in a corner with a dunce cap on my head and for awhile, I sit there.
Then I start getting restless because, well, that's one of the things that's different about me. I am incredibly passionate about things and when there's a fire lit under me (and there always is), I can't sit still. I have to move toward the passion. Another thing that's different about me is that I'm honest. Some might call it "boundary issues" but I'm that woman who's not afraid to put the pink elephant on the table and tell everyone in the room to get their heads out of their asses and come LOOK AT THIS THING. The people who love me think this is pretty cool, that I challenge them as I'm challenging myself to be better every day in some way. The other people, though ... well, they can't accept that there's an elephant in the room in the first place, and they sure as heck don't want to put it on the table or talk about it. And the fact that I've made them stop, look, and FEEL something just makes them really, really mad.
What do I do that "lights people up?" Again, I'll say that I've spent a lot of time in my life without a good mirror. The people closest to me, who theoretically are supposed to light up when I do something beautiful, have characteristically been missing the light bulb. I'm learning that this isn't my fault, and it's very liberating, really. I do think that when I follow my passions, when I throw myself into the acts of service that I really, truly believe in, people appreciate the role I've played in their lives, and I suppose that endears me to them.
I believe that daily demonstrations of love/compassion/patience/generosity/grace, not just love for family or for friends, but love for everyone with whom I come in contact as I go through life, are at the root of my beauty. Perhaps I will someday have a good, reliable mirror close by and eventually, I will learn to trust the beauty it reflects back to me.