I am simultaneously compelled to tell my story and driven to hide it. It’s a predicament. Letting the book fall open, being vulnerable, showing up, speaking out, and cringing all the while- this is my journey. I share because I don’t want to be alone. I share because I don’t want you to be alone. Shame about who we are, where we’ve been, and what’s happened to us will encourage us to shut ourselves away from a seemingly dangerous world. It will tell us we are innately wrong. It will entice us to shrivel up and waste away.
I’m kicking and screaming every day against the messages of shame. I refuse to go down like that. I’d rather endure the daily discomfort of being seen than exist as a half-life in the shadow of shame. I know the silence and pain of shame are deadly. I share to survive.
I’m writing this as a reminder to keep speaking. For every naked-feeling moment of vulnerability there is a matching moment of empathy, delivered in two sweet words, “Me too.” If you’re speaking those words into my life, I gotta say, you’re one of my preservers. Thank you.
If I can stop one heart from breaking,
I shall not live in vain;
If I can ease one life the aching,
Or cool one pain,
Or help one fainting robin
Unto his nest again,
I shall not live in vain.