I have this deep need that swells up every now and then...to clarify and reveal myself in ways that reflect and mirror who I really am....and dispel any misperceptions. I grew up with the quiet and subtle message to never reveal the painful shadows and only what was palatable and looked "pretty and good"...to keep things under control and not let the outside know of the dark struggles that were happening behind closed doors. It often left me with the feeling of being an imposter...for the mask covered what I knew wasn't so beautiful. Although I am blessed to be surrounded with supportive friends, wonderful groups, opportunities and situations that promote healing, I never want that to gloss over or disguise what it means to try to overcome the hurts and soul damage, that we who have been intimately betrayed, live with each day we arise. I know the daily challenge it is to work and push through the internal chaos and rubble left behind from abusive pasts and I never want to be yet one more place for others to feel "less than" or place me on some pedastal and be compared to as one who "has arrived" in any way, shape for form. Some days, in my own life, it is two steps forward then four steps back. The net result overtime is that we do gain positive ground and grasp a little more freedom than we did the last time we were faced with the same issues.
Yes...I am healing... learning...trying...growing. But I also fall short and struggle with the same hurts over and over...and unhealthy ways of coping with those feelings. I too stumble and have to get up again. How grateful I am for authentic community...for friends who see my progress even when I am too overwhelmed to trust and believe...for hands that continue to reach for me even when I pull away, isolate and become scared again. But for you who only know me through the images and words you see here, I feel a responsiblity to hold up a true mirror so that you too will see yourself in that mirror, can relate and know you arn't alone. There is beauty to be found as our hearts heal. But I am an imperfect vessel, a fellow travelor who just longs to forge a path...one that is real, healthy and true...that is safe for others to travel but doesn't disguise its difficult terrain. So it blesses me when I am seen as one who inspires...but I so hope that blessing always comes after you have seen the truth of who I am...a fellow wounded one in the process of healing...imperfect but hopefully real...never hiding who I am not....and humbly revealing who I long and hope to be. Pedastals are far places to fall from. I have mercifully learned that no one should ever be placed on one. I just hope we can all sit in the space that is called "eye to eye". Humanity is really the great leveler. We are all so much more alike than we are different. Judgement and lofty pedestals can get in the way of that truth. I hope today your visit reminds you that in your hurts, struggles, insecurities, doubts and challenges... you are not alone. Behind beautiful masks often are the carefully disguised realties of living in a world that is not so perfect. I long to live without that mask...no matter how hard it is to reveal the truth and to expose the hurts and shadows. I hope here you find a place where there is no measuring up or comparing yourself. I hope that in my presence...in the presence of these words, images, stories and art...your authentic breath can be fully released...and there is no need to hold up that burdensome mask.