I logged more than 5,000 words yesterday, and I’m on schedule to have the first draft of my book finished by October 1.
I wrote about my tumultuous relationship with my first boyfriend, which led me to a realization and some soul-searching questions…
As I reflected on my journals, re-visiting the words I feverishly jotted down in my journal at age 16, I felt as though I was reading someone else’s story. There was little emotional connection to what I was reading and preparing to share. I’ve made bad decisions, and I’ve done things that I’m not proud of. I’ve since taken responsibility for the choices I’ve made which caused pain to myself and to others. (Side note: If you’re the parent of a rebellious teenager, I feel for you).
There were so many things that I can see clearly now, but I didn’t see them at all in the moment. Having never navigated the waters of a romantic relationship before, I didn’t realize that love and pain need not be intermingled. That lesson actually took me a very long time to learn. Perspective changes everything, and I think there’s great power in the realm of responsibility and forgiveness.
Sure, I’m older now. Many years have passed, in fact, and I’ve grown up. My views have changed drastically, as to be expected with age and life experience.
I wanted to jump through the pages, imagining they were a portal that could bring me back to the girl who I once was. I wanted to sit beside her, talk with her, and help her realize this: At any given moment, you have the ability to make a change. Make choices that empower you, instead of those that break you down. If it doesn’t feel good internally, then let it go. Check in with yourself, and trust your intuition.
The girl who I once was hadn’t yet learned that her strength, power, and beauty were there all along. And I’m not talking about physical beauty. I’m talking about the spiritual kind – the kind of awareness that enables you to see and feel the beauty all around you at any given moment in time. The kind that forces you to contemplate your reason for being here on planet Earth. It’s the kind of beauty that, once we find it, we then have a responsibility to do everything in our power to share it with others. We never want to let that feeling go… it’s the kind of beauty that creates inspired action and a life worth living. I wanted her to see THAT kind of beauty.
So, here are the questions that surfaced after my writing session yesterday:
If babies are born pure, and they’re our closest connection to source energy (or God as you may prefer to call it), when does the human condition take over? When do we start doubting ourselves and when do we forget who we really are? How do we practice mindfulness when we don’t even know what mindfulness is? How does a young adult realize that she has the ability to change her way of thinking?
Maybe my 16-year-old mistakes needed to be made, to truly realize the value of self-reflection and the important lesson of forgiveness.
As I matured, embarking on a spiritual path in the process, I was no longer the victim of my circumstances. I’ve developed the tools necessary to deal with life’s challenges, and I’m doing my best. “My best” doesn’t always mean that I succeed in making the right choices, but at least I’m now able to learn lessons that prepare me for the next challenging circumstance that I might face.
In closing, I’ll share some wise words that my high school tennis team chanted before every match:
Good, Better, Best!
Never Let it Rest!
Until Your Good is Better
and Your Better is Best!
Thanks for taking the time to read and reflect with me, and I’d love to hear your thoughts.