Be Yourself

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I have been doing a lot of writing lately.

Writing has always been a sort of therapy for me.  For as long as I can remember, I have written in journals.  It is a way for me to express my feelings and thoughts without the fear of rejection. When I was really young and even in my teen years, I just said what I felt and sometimes I really hurt other people with my words.  Typically when I hurt someone, there was  some sort of backlash or retaliation, so I ended up hurt, too.  I didn’t always know how to express myself without anger, so eventually I just stopped trying.  Instead I wrote everything down.

Sometimes I wish I had kept all those journals from when I was younger, I have forgotten so many things.  Maybe it’s just as well.  Every few years I would go through all my notebooks and burn them.  I didn’t want anyone reading what I had written down.  One time my husband read one of my journals and became very angry with me about something I had written.  I was angry that he had read my journal, but I said, “I write in my journal so I won’t say things to people that may hurt them.  Once I get it on paper it is easier for me to work through it.  You were never meant to hear those words, you should not read someone’s personal journals unless you’re willing to deal with the consequences.”  I don’t think he’s ever read any of them again.

While doing my writing therapy, I have come to terms with a lot of things in the last few years.  One of those things is that I’m not getting any younger.  I look in the mirror and I see that I am getting older, there is no escaping that.  Something else I’ve learned about myself is that I have spent most of my life trying to be somewhere, someone else, doing something else.  When I was a child, I wanted to be a teenager, once I became a teenager, being 21 was the goal.  After 21 I think you start to slow down wanting to be older, but there was always something, somewhere else that I was trying to get to.  Have you ever felt that way?  Today isn’t enough, I want to be somewhere else, someone else, doing something different.

Why does it take so long for us to realize that Today is really all we’re supposed to experience right now?  Why do we feel the need to be in the future when all we have is right now?  I believe for me it is because I have never accepted myself as I am.  I have always wanted to be a better, prettier, thinner, stronger, happier, richer version of myself.  In the pursuit of those things, I have missed out on a lot of Todays.  If we are fortunate to get to old age, one of the things we will have to keep us company is our memories.  Somehow, I don’t think that memories of working, being away from my family, exercising and starving myself are going to sustain me when I am alone and feeling lonely.

If I could give one piece of advice to people it would be to be yourself, accept yourself, and love yourself just the way you are.  That doesn’t mean we can’t work toward improvement.  It doesn’t mean we stay where we are.  We are always moving forward in time, we should also be moving forward in our everyday lives.  But.  If we could learn to accept who we are today, learn that we are ok for right now, I believe we would be able to be more present.

When I get old I want memories of my family, adventure, friends and fun experiences to sustain me.

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