Traveling light - Living with an Open Heart.
You know that room with the shut door at parties? The forbidden space that hasn't been cleaned. The closet depot consuming junk that you just can't say goodbye to, so shove shove shove and cross your fingers at the close. I haphazardly stuff the dirty dog blankets draped across my carpet into the hall closet. Friends are coming over in 10! Shove shove shove, with a fresh vacuum this place will *appear* to be gleaming from floor to ceiling.
I wonder why we have to hide the messy and undone from our guests. Before you tell me all about your vast appreciation for cleanliness, let me join you in that. Polished floors, windows sans messy handprints and a smudge free fridge is something fierce and mighty and may be my love language.
However, I believe there is a lie out there that we have to shove our messy soul stuff into a closet before someone comes over. We have to be all buttoned up. I know because I used to participate in this superficial way of life. I would even pretend like I was having a good day when I wasn't. Now I'm lying to you, just to make you feel comfortable? Paste a smile on and boom! I could fool Inspector Clouseau.
Years on this journey of unmasking, letting the closet doors spill out, I want to touch on 2 points that could possibly be keeping us from a life of freedom, heart doors open wide. The way life is meant to be.
1. Shame. The lie that if people know _______, then I will no longer be lovable or enough. So, I hide ________ , so I can remain lovable and enough. Easy peasy...not so much, in truth, a suffocating way to live. The brilliant Brene Brown describes shame as the "intensely painful feeling or experience of believing that we are flawed and therefore unworthy of love and belonging – something we've experienced, done, or failed to do makes us unworthy of connection." So we hide, of course. We build walls around our flaws so we can be loved. Oh how this lie can steal your life.
2. Negative experiences when sharing your "messy." So you decide to let the mess out, share it with someone you trust and boom. They don't listen. They try to fix you or just don't know what to do with you, maybe they even abandon you. What a tragic loss of this potentially healing moment. I understand how this experience makes us feel unsafe and perpetuates the hiding. I encourage you to try again, talk to someone who will listen, who will sit with you and validate your emotions. At times, for me, this was a professional, my husband, best friend or mama. Those four have seen and heard it all and are still big fans. There is someone out there for you, I assure you. You don't have to carry everything on your own.
This post was in part inspired by Adele's beautiful mess up where she was singing live and experienced a glitchy sound feed. She stopped singing and asked to start over. What a babe. We are all human, we all have stories and room to breathe, fail, thrive, you name it. There is room for you to let those heart doors open wide and expose the flaws. My most favorite people are the ones I don't have to shut my closet doors for, the ones that look passed the mess and see ME. The ones who sit with me and hear my story. Be this friend, look for these people, they are paradise on earth. Here's to traveling light, my friends.