When I began writing this blog, I actually started it as a series of Facebook posts, set to “private” for just my Facebook friends and family to read. I got a lot of encouragement and I thought about transferring what I was writing over to a blog (which you are now reading, so I guess you know how that turned out…) but I was scared.
I was afraid that baring my heart and soul every day (through some very dark days, in particular) would negatively impact my business. (I own a daycare & preschool.)
So I wrote to a handful of people who had been reading and commenting on my daily reflections on Facebook, who are also former colleagues and/or parents at my school. I shared my fears about being public about my feelings. I asked them if they thought that people would shy away from leaving their children in the care of someone who, well…who is being really honest about not having her shit together.
Unequivocally, the consensus was that it is entirely refreshing when people are honest, and they allow themselves to be vulnerable. The feeling was….no one has their shit together, and so it is a huge relief when people actually admit it.
One person responded that the qualities that she saw in me from the very beginning were my capacity for empathy and the fact that I was relatable. She saw that I understood how hard it is to be a parent, and I offered my support, rather than my judgement.
One parent responded, “I think you are very brave. Isn’t it a shame that we live in a world in which being honest is considered an act of bravery?”
I’ve thought about that question a lot throughout the past few months, especially when I write something that causes my heart to race the moment I hit “publish.”
She’s right you know. It is a shame, and the more I interact with people through “Dipped In It” the more I realize how deep the fear and the shame go. So many people have written to me to share that something (or many things) that I’ve written could have been pages ripped from their own diary, or that they felt as though I had read their mind.
A lot of people.
It goes to reason that if that many people are actually taking the time to write to me to share their feelings of connection, there are many, many more who feel the same way and just haven’t said so (to me directly).
I say this not to pat myself on the back for bringing our collective feelings into focus, but to make the point that maybe…we are all feeling the same things!
Yet, we remain afraid of our feelings, or even ashamed of them.
We are all messy inside.
Every single one of us.
Isn’t that kind of liberating?
Did you know that the word courage comes from the Latin word, cor, which means heart?
Maybe it is okay that being honest about our feelings is considered an act of bravery, or courage. Revealing our authentic selves – our hearts – is a scary thing…and doing scary things takes courage.
The good news is, I think we are all capable of this very important kind of courage…
The courage to reveal our messy hearts to one another…and to experience how beautiful that can be.