February carries a focus on love that other months lack. The emphasis on love got me thinking about the concept of loving who you are to the point that you are so confident you practically glow with authenticity. And that thought led me to the conclusion that by loving yourself, you demonstrate the magic of becoming real. Real to how you’ve overcome life’s challenges and learned from them. Real in pursuing your dreams despite the critics who doubted your success. Real as in learning to view vulnerability as a resource to connect and a path to healing.
In Margery Williams beloved classic, “The Velveteen Rabbit,” the Skin Horse says to the little Rabbit, “real isn’t something you are, it’s something you become.” I believe that we become Real by loving who we are and experiencing the full range of ourselves. Especially accepting all of ourselves. I invite you to into the richness of all of our life experiences and glean the wisdom we’ve learned from those experiences.
Nothing is random. Whatever we are challenged by changes us forever. That hard-won knowledge has brought us to where we are right now. It made us who we are. It made us feel and we took action. Maybe we ran through such emotions as being mad, sad, frustrated, sorry, sympathetic, apathetic, or apologetic.
Whatever the actual feeling, we felt alive and REAL.
Once I admitted to myself and the world that I am a writer, I was terrified and exhilarated all at the same time. Putting my words into print and becoming vulnerable is a risk I’m willing to take to share my truth. If I’m going to go around saying that your story matters and no one can tell your story except you, then I’d better be willing to tell my story too. It took a long time for me to get over feeling vulnerable about having my work read. So I get how it can feel much safer to stay silent and invisible. And, I’m here to tell you that somebody is waiting to hear your story. You must share your story in order to become real. Others need to hear your story so that they can become real.
When the little Rabbit was first shiny and new, he had beautiful satin ears and a luxurious velveteen coat. But at the end of the story, he was threadbare and worn.
After we’ve endured, persevered and overcome whatever life has thrown in our path, we too find ourselves with frayed nerves and shattered egos. The wonderful thing is that, just like little Rabbit, we are not disheartened. Rather, we are energized to find that our patience and faith are rewarded.
When we are Real, we are seen as unique individuals.
When we are Real, our compelling stories are heard.
Hop (yes I did say hop) over to my Facebook page and share with me anything that came up as you read about “being real.”