Choosing Love

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This afternoon I finally made time to journal and reflect. It’s something that (almost) always helps me feel better, but for some reason I don’t do it was much as I’d like.There are a lot of unknowns for me right now, and that makes me uncomfortable. I recently told S that I’m feeling especially vulnerable these days, and it was a relief to admit that to someone out loud. I’ve decided to share some of today’s journal entry with you because the words that came onto the page are straight from my heart.

When I am honest with myself, I acknowledge that I feel broken right now. I am grateful and I choose joy as much as I can, but those things co-exist with the hurt. I am afraid of the unknown. And I ask myself, “What is the right way to deal with all of this?” I run ideas through my mind, but I don’t become convinced of a solution. And then I remember that there isn’t always a right way to handle something. I tell myself it’s okay to cry and scream when life is uncertain, just as it’s okay to spend time alone thinking about different ways to solve a problem. My personality tends to lean toward more emotional expression, but that doesn’t have to be seen as “wrong” or “not good enough.”

I spent a lot of my younger years motivated by shame; I was trapped by the fear of doing something wrong. As a result, I missed out on a lot of opportunities to see the beautifully messy parts of life. I now choose to live in love instead of fear. Living in love allows me to ask for help. Love tells me that I don’t have to know exactly what my future will hold. It pushes me to be vulnerable with loved ones when I feel alone. Love reminds me that I have value on my hard days, when my hair is a mess and my clothes don’t match. When I choose love over fear, I am able to live with hope again. And I am able to share my hope with other people.

But let me be clear– living in love is not always easy. Fear still sneaks in sometimes, and it tells lies and encourages shame. The only way I’ve found to push away fear is to accept my imperfections and embrace my humanity. My imperfections do not make me ugly or wrong. They do not determine my worth as a person. When I accept that I am human, I become able to make decisions because they are right for me. Living in love is a daily practice for me, just like choosing to live in truth.

Today I remember that the most beautiful parts of my soul have developed during tough times. Today I choose to live in love and drown out my fears. Today I accept that asking for help is not bad or wrong– it’s human. I will give myself time to breathe and reflect. I hope you can do the same.

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