Take a step back for a moment. There is no need to prove anything. The brave face you put forward everyday says enough.
I hope that when you finish reading this, you feel lighter. You just might be gentler with yourself. Everyone has bad habits. Everyone has blind spots. You will never figure it all out, but you will learn things. There's peace in that.
This is a place where cracks and imperfections and testimonies are beloved. Here, to know better does not always mean to do better, and that's okay. I believe and I still doubt. Through it all, I pray, I write and I hold on to myself. I am challenged everyday and I still choose to believe. Here, we tell stories; we don't judge.
I always want to do better. But I also want to allow myself to journey in peace, without constant criticism and judgment. I want to be a soothing refuge for myself. I try to avoid tripping over the same bump in the road more than once, but it happens. I trip. I fall hard often and get bruised. I'm not ashamed of my bruises anymore. I have lived. I am living. There's no need to hide that. I have scars, each one kissed with acceptance. If I didn't have these scars I wouldn't know how beautiful they could make me feel.
I wonder if you are ever afraid to get away. To just get up and walk out. Remove yourself from the madness. Walk out of the insecurity and the urge to compare yourself. Run and don't look back. Stop measuring yourself. Stop keeping track. Do you ever? Have you ever?
I have. But eventually, I look back. I look around and I lose my footing and I trip. I see myself doing things and I wonder when I'll stop. My assumptions threaten me with lack. I know they aren't real but I entertain them and I let them delay me. My mind can be a deceptive place.
My regrets are older than me. I grieve over things I've never seen. I can't remember, but I feel responsible. I feel necessary, then I feel useless. All the world is happening and if I don't shut it out, I can't hear myself. I can't contribute. I sit there with my cracks and imperfections and testimonies and I just breathe. Sometimes that's all I can do.
I'm not going to chase better. I won't hold on so tight that my hands lose their warmth and softness. My definition of success keeps getting simpler -- love, food, shelter, dreams. Everything else is luxury.
It has become clear to me that forgiveness makes life peaceful. And gratitude, that is what truly makes the quality of life better. Here, we appreciate the puzzles and the dead ends as much as the rainbows and the pots of gold.