A friend recently asked me why I had stopped writing in my blog. I told her, because sometimes I feel like I have nothing to say, that’s all. Sometimes I feel I have words that the world needs to hear. (And wow, doesn’t that sound boastful?) But so does everyone and their brother nowadays! Other times I think, with all the people who are trying to get their words across on the internet these days, why on earth would anyone want to hear what I have to say?
Perhaps it’s just that I’ve been trying to learn something important. You see, for as far back as I can remember, I’ve tried (and tried and tried and tried!) to be better in some way. As if who I’ve been has never been enough. I’ve read books (oh-so-many-books) on how to be this or that, or how do this or that even better. I’ve read articles, I’ve watched videos, I’ve gone to support groups and women’s groups and prayer groups and church groups – because my belief has been that I must always strive to be better. But I’m tired of striving! I’m tired of reading, watching, and attending! For the first time in my entire life I’ve been asking myself – what’s so wrong with me that I need to change everything all the time?
And the answer that I’ve come up with is…..nothing. Nothing is wrong with me. I AM good enough, just the way I am. I don’t need to be fixed. I don’t need to constantly be berating myself because of some random thought that I had that I felt wasn’t appropriate. I don’t need to continually be chastising myself because I ate something (or did something or thought something) some vague person or article said wasn’t good for me. Who gets to say what’s good for me – or not good for me? Shouldn’t that be ME, after all?
More and more I’ve come to believe that I no longer need to search for answers outside myself. I believe I’ve talked about this before somewhere here, but this is becoming clear to me in a brand new way. I believe, now, that the constance with which I berate myself for the way I feel I’m never doing it right (whatever IT is) – that this way of being is a complete disconnect to myself – body, mind and spirit. I’m coming to believe that if I constantly hate on myself for what I’m not, then I’ll never, ever achieve a true sense of being ok with who I am, right now, warts and all.
And believe me, I have warts – BIG ones. I worry and fret way too much over things I cannot control. I spend too much time regretting things in my past that I cannot change. I procrastinate. I don’t have a body that is – how shall we say – acceptable – in today’s society. I sometimes over-mother my kids and grandbabies. I perhaps spend too much time alone. I am what I like to call myself – a reluctant servant in the work that I believe I’m called to do in my little corner of the world – meaning, I don’t always do what I know I have to do willingly, but instead go kicking and screaming. I often relate to the story of Jonah, in the Bible, who kicked and screamed (and ran away and spent 3 days in the belly of a whale!) Yikes! Hopefully that will not be my destiny -cause, ya know, I don’t like fish! 🙂
With all of these not-so-positive ways of being, these days I’m still choosing to be ok with who/what I am. To have compassion for myself. To stop reaching for ways to do it all better, and just love myself for who I am. And I’m beginning to believe that once I can reach that place of real love for myself in all my ways of being – well, that will be a peaceful state in which to live.
Can I love myself through all of that – and more? Can I quiet the frenzied self talk that goes on and on, day and night? All I know is that I must stop pushing and pulling at myself, sending myself in a thousand different directions. It’s not good for me, in any way. And so, I’ve stopped reading so many articles. I’ve unsubscribed from newsletters whose owners promise the next big change if only you do it this way. I’ve stopped following gurus’ and men and women who are claiming to be leading the way in health and wellness. It’s all become tiresome. It makes me wonder what kind of world we might live in if we all really and truly loved ourselves from within? I believe that entails getting to know oneself inside and out. Hearing what our inner voices tell us. Listening to what our bodies say (because I believe our bodies speak to us daily). Becoming able to hear our own self – and drown out the cacophony around us.
There are a million more voices ‘out there’ that tell us to try this new way or tell us this is the way we should eat nowadays, this is the way our bodies ‘should’ look, or this is the car, house, education, vacation that we need to have. But what does our inner self tell us? If we can listen and hear that inner voice, perhaps we might stop getting caught up in the millions of voices we hear chattering all around us that tell us we will Never Be Enough.
So, perhaps this is the reason I have stopped writing. I have been learning something new – something important to me, something deep within myself that maybe I need to authenticate before I can write again. I make promises that I wish I could keep, but I don’t keep. And I’m going to be ok with that for now, and I’m going to say that I will write when I feel I really there’s something on my heart I wish to share. And I will try to write, not as someone who needs the world to know something, but perhaps as someone who is learning instead, and who is wanting to share that learning experience.
Perhaps getting to know/love myself just as I am has been why I have not been writing just now. Perhaps it’s just not been the time to write, no matter what my ‘intentions’ were. Can I be ok with that? Can you?