I write amazing blog posts.
In my head. While I am in the shower. The words and water flow with equal force and cleansing power. I am profound, smart, funny. I am fired up and ready to break the writing slump.
Then I sit here and…doubt. Insecurity. Fear. Creep in. Actually, not creep. More like trample me. They pummel me until I give in and the blinking cursor becomes too much and I distract myself with Facebook and Instagram. And if it were not Lent, also red wine.
Social media is the worst place to be when spiraling in impostor syndrome. Except today. While scrolling a writer I admire and respect posted this link to an article about the real meaning of self-care.
It often means looking your failures and disappointments square in the eye and re-strategizing. It is not satiating your immediate desires. It is letting go. It is choosing new. It is disappointing some people. It is making sacrifices for others. It is living a way that other people won’t, so maybe you can live in a way that other people can’t.
Looking failures in the eye. Letting go. Choosing new. Oof. I am not particularly strong in any of these things. I’ve stopped myself from a lot, mostly writing, because I doubt the universality or applicability of my experience. If it doesn’t resonate with everyone, then it’s not worthwhile.
This afternoon my ten year old son participated in a student-led parent teacher conference. Twenty Google slides and 10 minutes of talking about himself and school. Friends, favorite subjects, what he excels in, where he needs development. It was totally awesome (Yeah public schools and tax dollars at work!) and inspiring. He was terrified. He did it anyway. He was awesome and inspiring.
Brene Brown says that we need to stop looking for proof of our un-belonging, because we will always find it. If this is true, which I believe it is, then, the opposite is also true. If we look for evidence of belonging, then will also find that.
I found validation in a quote on Facebook. I found courage in the hazel eyes, messy hair, and shaky voice of my ten year old son. I re-found my voice and went back to the notes I had hastily scribbled after I got out of the shower this morning.
Questioning the value of my story is a huge disservice to the work it took me to get here.
Who am I to write about myself, life, parenting, writing, coaching, friendship, love, family, faith?
I am the expert on my own life. Who am I not to?
What a wonderful, honest blog post. Thank you for this, and for sharing what inspired you to keep on writing. I loved that you tied in Brene Brown’s words…so true! And added your own spin–we will find evidence of belonging if we only open our eyes, and that’s what we should focus on!
Yes, you ARE the expert of your own life–no one else is; you are the driver. And it is important to share our stories, because even if people don’t tell you, they may be so moved and inspired by what you produce that you will have changed their life. You may never know this effect, but it happens all the time. But if you don’t write, you are not only doing yourself a disservice, but also a disservice to others who may need your words, your story, in order to share their own.
So, keep on creating. Find the inspiration you need, even if it’s a break from writing, and then keep going–because no one else will do it but you.
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