I saw this quote on instagram the other day: "remember, you are in control of how you show up in the world. i hope you choose to be big and not shrink for the comfort of others. give yourself permission to take up space, and bloom wildly without regret." - alex elle
My greatest fear is that I won’t be heard or believed and yet I don’t speak my truth for fear of others anger, thoughts or judgments. This was a mind blowing revelation to me. - And this is slowly changing and I’m so proud of myself - It was a hard realization for me because I thought I was an honest person who was genuine, and while that’s true in my love for others it has not been true in my love for myself.
Nor has it been true in my opinions, views on big topics or when I need to speak up for myself or stand strong in my decisions or intuition. I am learning that I matter and that the way I respond to things is valid. That my feelings are valid because they’re my feelings (thanks Grant for giving Care that gold). I am learning that my intuition is actually most often right and I now regret when I don’t act upon it or when I let others sway me.
I can be strong. I can be weak. I can be consistent. I can flip flop. I can feel bliss. I can feel pain. I can feel blah or discontent and not feel shame in that. I am learning to (work on at least) accept negative realities while still finding hope and pockets of joy.
This sounds uplifting to me now as I read it but in all honesty it has been hard and painful. And it still is. Cuz as much as I wish I had already learned and applied these things and could tell you how amazing life is when you’re truly you and feel no guilt or shame in who that is or how she speaks, lives, mothers and acts; I am not there yet.
I’m in the hard parts, the ugly parts. I’m learning things about me that aren’t pretty, some are sad, and all require hard emotional work. Thank you counseling, digging into self and soul, the enneagram and worship. And if I'm being honest, most days I feel too tired to continue. but I don’t give up because that moment when I when I told someone no and gave no unnecessary explanation just to make sure their emotions were fine, I felt free.
Because in the midst of a rough day of parenting all wrong and crying 8 times before lunch, I also managed to enjoy some time with the kids and show them what an apology looks like. The enjoying of motherhood hasn’t come easy for me (that’s another post for another day) and the guilt and shame is staggering. So to feel some enjoyment during a rough day and being able to recognize the guilt and work on it has been huge.
I don’t give up because even in the midst of an argument or an open discussion/debate, I now check in with myself and make sure I believe in what I’m saying and that it’s true to my feelings and my person. And then I continue on, altho roughly as learning to state my opinion is tricky and I’m so new to it, and then I feel confident after that I stayed true to myself. I heard me. I believed me. So it no longer matters to me as much if you haven’t. It will always matter somewhat because that’s still important, but it doesn’t crush me and take away my breath all the time anymore, just sometimes.
I don’t give up because even though doubt and confusion are scary, asking questions and digging into the doubt is powerful and necessary in order to find Truth and to believe in something and to believe in you.
So even though most days I still have a few good cries a day and drop a few serious swear words (Nighttime Stephanie has stuck around in a few ways lol) and even tho most days I still wonder what my purpose is or if I’ll ever quit failing at all the things, I also now have a quiet voice that timidly and courageously speaks up.
It whisper shouts and tells me that crying is therapeutic and swear words are expressive (away from my kids lol) and that purpose is to be found along the way over and over again and often by surprise or in the mundane. that quiet voice also reminds me that failure is only determined by me and I can choose whether it’s “failure” or growth or failure AND growth. Like I always tell my 5 year old “you’re in charge of you”. And I choose to keep going. To keep learning, to keep leaning in to my negative emotions so I can walk through them instead of hiding them. I choose to keep crying and screaming and laughing. I choose to keep loving and rocking children at night (sometimes while crying because shiiiit i am so TIRED) and telling my family and friends “No, this is who I am now”. I choose to keep learning who that is. I choose to promise her that one day I will feel that amazing love and connection to her and in the meantime I will relish and respect her and the process. <3
as always, thanks for listening and I love you guys
the lighting was amazing. husband called me out; got a text that said 'quite taking selfies you're gonna be late lol' but you know, as lizzo says "fresh photos with the bomb lighting" lol
my daily life. usually one, often three, children touching me at once and demanding my attention
i love this one so much. i am learning just how often i have not seen my potential just because I am a girl. its been hurting my heart but freeing at the same time. time for change.
read this twice <3
real life. bad lighting. the swollen eyelids are almost ever present. it me.
this is the one!