Lately I’ve been feeling insecure and unsettled. Since writing about being back in the valley again, I’ve definitely been feeling better but still not walking light and easy. I feel like I keep making mistakes, or one little life issue after another keeps stealing my peace. And I have to march over to enemy territory and take it right back again.
Instead of giving up or falling apart or throwing a tantrum I just show up.
I start my day by expressing gratitude and remind myself that perfection is not required. I can just show up.
Instead of berating myself for all the not-so-healthy granola bars my youngest has eaten lately because I haven’t been baking, I focus on getting decent lunches and suppers into her. I just show up.
I find myself procrastinating on writing again, wondering if any of this matters. But then a friend and a stranger and a fellow writer all message me and provide a much needed word of encouragement so I sit down at my laptop to talk with you. Real talk, like if we were having coffee together. I just show up.
There is fear in my chest. I feel it, heavy. Some of it is a voice of judgment about how I too often say the wrong thing or don’t easily fit in. Some of it is fear that I need to quickly find my place in my community, make my mark before the competition grows stronger. But I shake off those shackles and just show up.
You’ve heard this many times before, but I am walking through a season of transition and it is so much harder than I ever anticipated. There is the letting go of what was–my years of little people and homeschooling and knowing my role, they are over. And there is the turning my eyes and heart forward and believing that there is amazing beauty yet to come. Every day I just show up and remind myself that I am OK and it will be all be OK.
It occurs to me now that while divorce is hard, choosing to stay together after kids are mostly grown might even be harder. Because even when you love each other, it requires very deliberate, daily choice and intense vulnerability to move toward each other rather than apart. To look at the other person and decide to love them as is and trust that they will offer you that same incredible gift. Daily I just show up.
There is no clear path for the work I want to do. I glean from others and listen and learn. I wrestle against comparison and not good enough. But today I offer myself permission to be less than great and I just show up.
The ups and downs of dealing with anxiety and even depression from childhood feel wearying. I’ve come so far and my knowledge and compassion permit me to love and serve others even as I care for myself. And even though I read your stories there is part of me that can feel just a little too broken sometimes.
But I’m asking you to show up and I will just show up too.
I am blessed beyond measure. I get to love a family and eat real food and feel the sunshine on my skin. I have the privilege of washing dishes and taking walks in a safe environment and I live in freedom. I get to just show up.
This post first appeared on Mother.ly