Airing Out My Uglies

Well friends if you have hung in so far you have realized that my narratives are candid and raw. Maybe cringe-worthy real to some of you.

Buckle up because that is not going to change. Part of my drive to create this blog and pour my own inner thoughts and fears and rough spots out into the world is to let people know that they are not alone. To invoke in others the courage to dip their toe into that big scary pool of authenticity. Regardless of the outside world’s perception.

There have been countless times in my life where I have felt so lost and alone. I was too frightened to share my inner feelings. Hiding who we are creates shame and secrecy. Isolated in our own cages of Pinterest perfect facades. The more we cower in our fear the stronger our prison becomes. Until one day a life shattering event knocks it down. Or not, and we live routinely, robotically pretending to be who we think we should be.

Much of my childhood was spent existing in falsehoods. I felt too ashamed to reveal to anyone that I came from a very broken dysfunctional family.

I can recall as a newlywed feeling swept away and eaten up by this new role as a wife. I didn’t know how to be a wife. I couldn’t do wifely domesticated things. I refused to reach out and share my overwhelming fears of losing myself while failing to be a good wife. As a result, I struggled and my marriage struggled.

I remember back to the first morning home with my brand new beautiful and healthy baby girl. I was absolutely panic stricken with the fact that I was now responsible for the life of another human being. A helpless fragile one at that. Although I had educated myself by reading books and taking classes and I had all the required baby survival gear I felt utterly lost. I couldn’t believe they let us take her home, just like that. Again, my stubbornness prevented me from reaching out to valuable friends and resources to ease the transition into my new role as a mother. Unsurprisingly, it was a bumpy road. I was disillusioned in my beliefs that I should innately know how to wife and mother. That if I didn’t know instinctually I was somehow defective. I couldn’t reveal that. It would be like admitting there was something terribly wrong with me. It appeared to my distorted brain that everyone else had such a smooth and easy handle on this whole life navigation thing.

I don’t know where all of these expectations were born from. Probably some disaster soup of my background and media influences and society at large. Nevertheless, my insecurity and fear breathed life into them and they grew larger and larger. Until they ruled me. My perceptions and expectations dictated everything in my life. I unknowingly drowned out my own true self.

Until an accumulation of life altering events began to chink away at my prison. When my mom died my prison came crashing down with the rest of my world. I learned through my losses that I did not want to live as my loved ones that died had lived. I wanted to reinstate me. The real me. Much like a phoenix I am resurrecting myself from the ashes of what and who I was. Evolving into who I am meant to be. And it is painful and hard but oh so good at the same time. I am as free as I allow myself to be.

I air out my Uglies. My Ulgies are the behaviors and feelings that sabotage my growth. They are the part of the human mind that we don’t like to discuss openly or own. They are as they’re named- Ugly. For me they are fear, shame, anxiety, and anger. They are the part of me that lashes out when I am hurting or feel hurt or wronged. They wear a million different masks. They are clever at undermining and derailing me. They are the part of me that tries to deny and stifle my vulnerability. They try to prevent my connection with others. They aim to rebuild my prison. But if I air them out, admit them, sit with them, own them. Then, I am able to tame them. Then, I am able to see that we are all a part of the human struggle. We are all in an epic battle of truth and authenticity in the pursuit of love and happiness and satiation.

At least once a week I tell Baby Reinvention, who is a sensitive girl, that her feelings are just feelings. I tell her that somewhere in the world someone else has felt exactly the way she is right in this moment. I tell her people have felt just as she has for many years before her existence and that people will share her same feelings many years after her existence. She accepts this and it lightens the intensity of whatever she is working through because those feelings are no longer compounded by loneliness. She accepts this so easily and yet I continue to struggle.

Here, is the imprint of my struggle. Openly admitting the beauty in the imperfections. Refusing to buy into societal standards. Creating my life according to my standards. Living in moments. Soaking it all up. Some days. Other days my Uglies are out in full force like a pack of gremlins. But I see them and I now know that I am much more than my Uglies. Then, I gather my strength and tell them to get the fuck off my unicorn.

Anyone out there with their own pack of Uglies? Share who they are and what you do to quiet them.

Melissa

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