Where to next?
I firmly believe there’s a bit of a lie when they say the first step is the hardest - I think it's the second step. The choice to go back and returning can be harder. This is where I’m at.
I understand myself to be the kind of person that keeps a tight lip on things, until I decide to open up - hello flood gates! I’m so excited about this space to share all these thoughts, discoveries and laughs; I just want to let loose and put it all out there in one go. I don’t think we’re ready for that - heavier emphasis on the me side. In the back of my mind Brene Brown pops up all the time with,
“Our stories are not meant for everyone. Hearing them is a privilege, and we should always ask ourselves this before we share: "Who has earned the right to hear my story?.”
I remember the first time I decided to let someone hear the beginning of my story. I was sitting down with one of my dearest and closest friends to discuss a book we both just finished reading, Love Warrior by Glennon Doyle, when I couldn’t help but let the words come out. I was so afraid to share - filled with shame and fear of judgement. I knew it was a safe space and in the end it was the right decision because I had chosen to enter in my first adventure into therapy shortly after. Little did I know that six years later that same friend would help guide me to my most important healing work.
Over the years I began to share my journey with my closest friends, and eventually my parents. I will say that it was the hardest (one-sided) conversation I have ever had in my life. Every time I recall that conversation I can't help but think "my poor parents". I messaged them that I was coming over to tell them something and I set out some ground rules:
I know you love me.
I want to remind you none of this is a reflection of your parenting skills.
I don't want hugs and no messages after (at the time I felt like I didn't need "support").
(And the biggest one of all) I'm leaving right after.
My parents respected my boundaries that day. I've since opened it up for discussion realizing it wasn't fair to them. I can't imagine what it would have been like to be in there shoes for that discussion. To be honest, I wanted to avoid feeling the heart break - but it was there anyways. In that moment, I was trying to find how to share my story, still struggling to process what had happened over the years. My mind has since spent many hours trying to put the pieces together to share it in a way where I can minimize my heart rebreaking and make room to care for the receiver. This is one reason why we're going to spend some time to get there.
I find it hard to express how much my love for my parents grew after that day. I don't think there's really words in any language that can express how much they mean to me.
The second hardest conversation I had was after I wrote my first musing last year - I plan to share it with you on it's anniversary date in May. I learned from the first time, well sort of, and allowed conversation to flow. I made sure to wear sunglasses as my armor and opened the gates. And my final tough convo is in the works ;).
There have been some people that I have told my story to and we grow closer or they have chosen to leave my life or play a smaller role - and that's fine. You really can’t be for everyone and the ones who don’t stick around, they aren’t meant to be on this journey with you.
That’s the beautiful thing about storytelling, it’s your story! You can tell as much or as little of it as you want. You hold the pen. The important thing is that there is a power behind telling it. Whether it’s empowering you or other people to maybe pause and reflect on their own journey. You never really know, until you take those first few steps.
So here I am at the cross roads, taking the next step by sharing another musing - a reminder to you that you need to honour your boundaries that you set. That you need to choose what is right over comfort. And, if you don't want to do anything - you don't have to. As for me, I'm ready with steps 3 to 20 right now, on my own terms - for I am the keeper of my story.
See you on the path to finding joy ✌🏻 - SM