Tuesday, January 29, 2013

On Vulnerability/The Real Confessions

I have been thinking lately of what courage is, what it looks like. My 9th graders recently finished a book clubs unit with that as the guiding theme: "What does courage look like?" So many novels, so many different forms of courage.

I decided that--for me--courage is vulnerability. Being open, exposing even your fragility. We all have those tender spots. We all fear. We all hurt. But so much of our socialization rests on hiding that. Crying in public is poo-pooed. When we ask, "How are you?" we never mean it. All we want to hear is how "fine" everyone is doing. 

But that is weak. That is dishonest. That is the opposite of courage.

I'm terrified of my vulnerability. But I think I've finally found my resolution for 2013: to let my vulnerability manifest itself. To share it more. To be soft and fragile and to see what happens when I expose that. My goal is to trust, or at least trust more. Especially in those arenas of life that are my most vulnerable.

If I am hurt, I will learn something from it. But, honestly, I think there is more I'd miss out on if I don't pull down my defenses and expose myself for who I truly am.

I am a romantic at heart who has never fallen in love. That stings. I am sometimes lazy and sometimes over-worked. I am a stress monster. I haven't figured out how to balance my life the way I thought I might when I was younger. And that is okay. I like to swear and usually feel a bit guilty about it. My body curves as it wants to, but I can make it strong. I can love it even if it looks different than some. I am wild and disorganized and imperfect. Sometimes I am boring. But actually, I am beautiful and interesting and worth loving just as I am.

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