That’s Aight With Me

It seems as I’m posting in a more confident voice, I’m losing some readers.

My subscription numbers fluctuate slightly. Gain one, lose one.

I’m talking less about God, and focusing more on me.

I’m not as humble. But to be a good Catholic or Christian, you don’t need to put yourself down.

It’s okay to like yourself!

I feel like a common trap with our faith is to become so meek, we compromise ourselves. I’m outgrowing that.

And maybe that’s not something everyone can relate with, but that’s fine.

Because this blog is for me. It’s to validate what I feel. It’s a reflection of my journey and growth and the epiphanies along the way, simple and profound.

But I’m not letting the fear of the unknown dictate what I’m going to write. The right readers will find, and appreciate, what I’m sharing. They’ll stick with me. They’ll “like” and comment, or not.

I’m realizing that I’m not speaking to anyone in particular, it’s not about the reaction I get anymore.

I’m thinking out loud.

By being myself, I can’t lose!

My Favorite People

are flawed.

But own it.

It’s a rare attribute– most are so concerned about their image, they feign perfection.

That extends to their happiness, their health, their job satisfaction, socio-economic status.

I like people don’t pretend. Who just wear their feelings openly.

Be that with their facial expression, body language, and what they do (or don’t) say.

Who SHARE their struggles.

You know you can trust those people.

I’m not one to hide my feelings. I did when I was younger.

But since I stopped, my life improved exponentially.

I like myself better, I’m more tolerant of other people. More humble.

People treat me with *more* respect, actually.

You may lose people along the way– but at least you’re being your true self. Over time, the right people will be attracted to and stick by you. I’m not saying to be cruel and irresponsible just because you *feel* like it. Be prepared to accept the consequences of your actions and words.

What I’m saying is, the hardest person to forgive is yourself. Don’t compromise your values and feelings just to perpetuate a facade for everyone else.

I’d rather be rejected for being myself than accepted for putting on an act.

It’s the HIDING that gets us all in trouble. Why be so afraid? It’s not weakness.

We’re all human– we’ve got that in common. We have bad days, aches and pains.

Physical limitations. Disappointments. Abject failures.

Don’t feel you’ve gotta impress everyone.

Be yourself. And I promise, the right people will adore you for it.

Give it a try.

Strong, Not Cute: Learning Self-Defense

Tonight I’m strong, not cute.

I’ve been “cute” all my life. It’s a product of being petite and enjoying fashion.

Now I’m in a self-defense class, and it’s changing the way I feel. About using my voice, and my body– to protect myself. To assert myself.

I’ve been intellectual and creative for so long, I’ve nearly forgotten that I’m also naturally athletic. I’ve ignored this about myself since high school, when I decided the fall play was more exciting than cross-country.

I’m the smallest woman in my class– and I now see that as an asset. Until now, I’ve learned to diffuse situations and avoid physical altercations at all costs– which is a skill itself. I’ve mastered not reacting.

Now I’m learning that I’m more than just someone small and cute.

I may have delicate wrists, but I can still pull away quickly. I’m learning basics– punches, take-downs, blocks.

My partner tonight was taller than me by several inches– she kept apologizing for hitting me. But I told her to go for it. My wrists were turning red, but I wasn’t bothered. I used to play volleyball. I can deal.

It feels weird and also exciting to be hitting someone else– to be taking offense, not just defense. To learn how to move into someone, how to use their motion against them.

It’s wonderful to be taking agency with my body in a pro-active way that’s helping me be healthier, as well.

To shout, “NO!” This is my third class. Just shouting it at first, my voice was horse. I can match someone if they’re yelling at me when necessary to get them to back away. But I’m not used to speaking loudly these days.

I’m used to being the quiet, unassuming, humble one. My dominant strategy was to blend in.

Now I’m becoming aware. I feel my abs work when I turn, I feel my hips flex. I feel my breath.

I can see why so many people are obsessed with fitness. It feels good.

I’m learning what it feels like to hit things– even if it’s just a bag. I’m embracing the adrenaline.

I’m USING the fear, not letting it arrest me.

It’s gratifying to know that I’m intimidating to a woman bigger than I am– because I was more confident in my motions. She held back– I used all the power I had.

The world may be a Goliath, but I’m David with the sling-shot.

I feel like a natural.

I feel like I’m taking control of not just my behavior, but my bodily safety. I’m not a sitting target.

I’m moving. I’m quick. I’m stronger than I realized.

Best of all, I’m stronger than anyone else looking at me would realize.

I have quiet power.