Ten years ago, I never thought I’d become one of those women who preached love and light and empathy (think Liz Gilbert and Tara Stiles), but here I am.
Not only did I used to think they were full of shit (oh, young me), I also thought I’d never be able to, you know, surrender to the flow of the universe. Or whatever. It seemed like some hippy bullshit. Surrendering was giving up.
I grew up in a world where women are supposed to be nervous and insecure so they are quiet and obedient and buy shit to fix themselves. To compensate for that, I latched on to a masculine mindset and became a drill sergeant to myself.
Over time, I can to realize the culture was wrong, and it wasn’t that being a woman was the problem, it was the stupid cultural rules that were the problem. Women like Liz and Tara aren’t arrogant, they are authentic. They break the rules. And I wanted to be like that, too.
I worked at it for years, and it was a journey that was never easy. But last summer, I finally understood. Sometimes it takes just one event to break through those emotions, and that happened to me. Thankfully, I took advantage of that event and realized I wasn’t completely accepting of myself.
On New Year’s Eve, I celebrated with friends and we took fun photos in front of a beautifully-decorated and lit wall (that’s what you do when the host is a photographer).
She made a portrait of me that’s not only the best-ever portrait of me, made me realize I am one of those women now. I’ve crossed to the other side.
You guys, it’s the absolute best.
I’m still me. I make mistakes and struggle. I swear, obviously, and I’m not graceful, and I love reading about and thinking about the darker sides of life, such as struggle, shame and sorrow.
But I have finally, completely accepted who I am. That’s what it is. I’ve surrendered to the person I am. Hallelujah. I’m not fighting and resisting myself; I’m working with myself. That’s how you get shit done.