Many roads keep leading me to this message but I'm not learning the lesson yet. I think it's time I really started to try.
36 is going to be my year of radical self acceptance. Here are some things about me:
I'm a good friend but not a perfect one. I'm terrible at keeping secrets and I've lost friends over it. I may again. I'm not a great shoulder to cry on always but I'm exceptionally good at managing a crisis.
I'm not as active as I want to be. I've allowed my body to be in stasis as I'm try to figure out my mind. My mind scares me because I feel patently inadequate all the time. I feel so markedly inferior to my desired self that I'm hurting my partner by my inability to see my own good.
I have advocated for children. I made a difference and they have a better life for it and they loved me.
I've saved lives, human and animal.
I've lied. Many times for many reasons. I do it less now.
I'm anxious nearly all the time right now. I'm grumpy sometimes--too often right now. I'm scared to be happy.
I'm better than I was last year at being married. I get better every year because I make an effort.
I tell funny stories.
I need to give myself a break.
I'm learning over the last few years that I'm totally incapable of allowing myself to feel proud of something I've accomplished. I've managed to internalize a dialogue wherein anything I do is not nearly enough. Dinner made and on time five nights this week? Should have been seven. And included lunches. And doesn't a real wife make breakfast for her husband? If I make a goal about my activity level and then do something, well, it's not a marathon.
This constant discounting, not allowing myself to feel happy or content has got to stop.
My one-little-word to focus on for last year (2013, really, but I'm changing this to start on my birthdays) was 'better'. I have done better. We're eating better food. We're more in control of our budget. We moved. And I made lots of that happen. I did better. And I have a few more months to focus on that.
Next year, however, it's time for me to accept myself. Warts and all. Not to push forward, not to look back--just to be in the moments, occupy them fully and allow joy into my heart. Radical self-acceptance. Let's see what that looks like.