Owning our story can be hard but not nearly as difficult as spending our lives running from it.
— Brené Brown, The Gifts of Imperfection
My deepest regret in life at the moment is not being different than I am. I am too much this and not enough that. In nearly every aspect of my life, I feel like I am not who I am supposed to be, who I wish I could be. Discontentment with the reality of being me has been slowly creeping in, one facet of my life at a time, taking over my thoughts and leaving me colored by shame and embarrassment for being such a failure at being other than myself.
Reaching a particularly low point yesterday further induced by frustration and uncertainty regarding my writing projects, I reached for a book I bought months ago and promptly shelved until I had some spare time to delve into it and change my life. Brené Brown’s The Gifts of Imperfection brought tears to my eyes no less than seven times as I made my way through the introduction and first two chapters. Shame storms, courage, compassion, connection, love and belonging, worthiness…My heart was resonating with the messages on every page. In the midst of an epic shame storm, I longed for the courage, compassion, and connection that Brown identifies as the hallmarks of wholehearted living. I long to live, work, and relate wholeheartedly. And to be honest guys, right now I am not doing much of that. I’m closer to wholehearted than I’ve been in the past, but I’m struggling. I’m a bit lost.
Wrestling with questions of who I would be if I let go of fear and comparison, if I embraced who I am, if I believed in my worthiness instead of hustling for it is a priority for me. I do not want to spend any more time pursuing what is not for me or running from my own messy but exquisite story. I am worn out from incongruent living, from regretting who I am not and trying to pretend my way into a place in the world. But to work through what I need to work through, I need time and space. Fortunately, I signed up months ago for an autumn retreat beginning next week. Although I’d originally planned to simply work on my novel throughout the week, I am now viewing this retreat as place in which I have the freedom to explore my own heart and maybe even scout out the next few steps on my continuing journey towards wholeheartedness.
I feel incredibly grateful that my crisis of faith in myself and subsequent need for grace and wisdom coincides with my long-planned escape into the mountains. I do not want to squander this opportunity to own a little more of my story and release the guilt I feel for not being who I think I’m supposed to be. To ensure my focus can be where it is desperately needed right now, I will be taking a brief break from blogging from October 27 to November 5. One True Sentence photos will also be placed on hold from October 27 to November 3. I look forward to meeting you back here or on Facebook when I’m a bit more myself. Cheers!