I heard a question today from Glennon Doyle’s new book Untamed and I absolutely love it and will be taking time to ponder it. She posed the question, “Who were you before the world told you who you needed to be?” Wow… like my jaw dropped… This question really hit home for me.
I have written before about taking off the masks and trying to fit in and working on rediscovering my true authentic self.
As I was pondering this and of course, Brene Brown’s vulnerability as well, my thoughts reverted back to an incident that happened just a few hours ago.
My husband, our oldest son, and I were all in the kitchen and our youngest was playing on the piano in the next room over when we heard a loud thud. We go out to find that the youngest had somehow knocked the piano bench over and there were books and papers all over the ground.
I knelt down by him and asked what had happened and he said it was an accident. I told him that was ok, and I wanted to know how it happened. He started crying and sort of tried to reach his arms out as he wanted to be embraced, to be in my arms, to know everything was OK and that I still loved him. The piano bench was in between us so I told him to come around to me. I pulled him in and explained I first wanted to know that he was OK and just wanted to know how it happened so we could prevent accidents like this one from happening again. I reassured him that accidents are OK and that everyone has them or makes mistakes.
A little later he asked my husband and me if we ever have accidents. Of course, we have and he wanted to know examples.
It wasn’t until just a little bit ago that I realized the whole impact of this incident and the power of the words and compassion that I chose.
This little 5-year-old boy didn’t want to get in trouble. He was going to do and say whatever he could come up with as to not disappoint us. He’s already learning to put on masks to people please.
This realization really hit me hard. Thinking back to his little arms reaching out to me for reassurance that he still had my love.
I don’t want either one of my boys to ever feel like making a mistake or having an accident is a bad thing. As a matter of fact, I don’t want anyone thinking that way. Mistakes and accidents happen. It’s what we chose to learn from it and the actions that we take after that matter.
I want my kids and anyone else I talk to, to know they can come to me with anything and I will give them love and compassion. That together we can learn and make ourselves and the world a better place.
Today has really taught me to be aware of my thoughts, actions, and words. And to choose kindness.
I could have easily gotten mad at my son for goofing off and making a mess which I have done many times in the past. But this time, choosing to bring light to the lesson felt a whole lot more powerful and less energy-draining.
The thing I want you to take away from all of this is that it is OK to make mistakes. It is OK to be your authentic self. Know that not everyone is going to accept you or react the way you want them to. There are people out there who do love you and accept you for who you are. And the main one needs to be you. Love yourself and accept yourself unapologetically. Live your best life. Put yourself out there. Do the thing(s) you have always wanted to do!