I have spent most of my life running away from myself. Who I thought I was. What I didn’t want to be. What I thought I should be. What I thought I was supposed to be. What I wished I had been. Running away from looking at who I am.
I have spent the last few years beginning to take a good hard look at who I am. Seeing myself for what I am – not what others wanted me to be or expected me to be, not who I wanted myself to be.
I’m surprised by how relatively little most people know about themselves. Or share with others what they know about themselves. Or both.
I’m surprised at how difficult it is to strip away the layers to truly see who I am.
And how surprisingly easy it is to examine who you are once you do so.
Who I am is my foundation.
I had to tear down the house and the driveway and the meticulously planted landscaping and the poorly formed sense of myself to find the foundation.
I spent a very long time thinking, and believing, that I was a bad person. Because I didn’t fit into the molds that (I had believed) other people had created. Because I hadn’t spent the time and energy to examine the beliefs I grew up with and picked up along the way to determine if they were in sync with what I feel to be true. Because I did not accept the parts of myself I didn’t like.
Because I didn’t love myself.
I have analyzed every aspect of myself – why I do anything, what I feel, why I act and react the ways I do, what triggers me, what I value… I continue to do so. Now that I have discovered the foundation, I am beginning to build upon it.
I have accepted that there are parts of myself I cannot change. And I have begun to work on changing the things I can change about myself.
I am learning to love myself. For who I am.
I’m not perfect. I sometimes take steps backwards but, even on my worst days, I can examine and plan for better days using what I know and continue to learn about myself. I am whoever I want to be and, if I am not, only I can make changes to get myself there.