Last night I could see gray clouds rolling away as quickly as they had rolled in at the beginning of the week. I finally started to come to again. Numb limbs were replaced with feeling. The real sky even exploded into a cotton candy sunset just to prove all was right in the world.
And now that I am finally on the other side of it I can take a deep breath.
I will be there again, I remind myself in order to also remind myself that I will always come out on the other side okay. It's the middle, ugly, murky, gritty parts of life that make us grow the most. Where exquisite meets excruciating and explodes into painful and beautiful color. The days when the Starbucks drive thru worker chipperly asks, How is your day going? and you just want to say, It's okay. I know you have to ask me, but you don't have to pretend with me. I'm horrible. Let's just share a moment of silence. When basic things are much more difficult than you remember, those are growing pains, Friend, and we just have to ride out the wave.
Sometimes I confuse feeling and thinking.
Feeling is almost never wrong. It simply is. It's just born in us in moments. It can be a swift rush or it can stay a little while.
Thinking can help rationalize feeling, which often aren't rational in the first place. Thinking frequently lies to us and is often unkind. Prolonged periods of thinking about the same topic is a dangerous dark alley. Look around, if you are there, please get out.
Three weeks ago I guest posted on a blog called Momastery. Except it's not really a blog, it's an empire of truth telling and heartfelt living out loud. It's a little scary, because sometimes telling the truth is scary, but sometimes not telling the truth is even harder. The Momastery Momma, Glennon is the real deal. She's a feeler and weaver and connector. It was a scary, beautiful, overwhelmingly amazing day. It brought me many new friends, connections and realizations. I felt heard and connected in a way I firmly believe I am called to be.
That day I received an email from Glennon. Are you sitting down? Was all it said. A horrible, wonderfully, exciting email to receive. Turns out G sent an editor at Huffington Post my words. She said that she loves me and thinks my voice is important and she wants to run my Momastery piece on Huff Post Parents for all the people in the world.
And I read that email and cried some of the most beautiful and healing tears I never even knew were possible. A couple of weeks later I was connected to the editor via email. I wrote the editor and didn't hear back. A couple of days turned into a few weeks. I asked G, who followed up- but now still nothing. I LOVE Glennon for trying though.
And boy did I think that through. I was in that dark alley. Because I then turned the email into the opposite. My voice is NOT important. My story doesn't matter. And I've carried it with me since then. And then I thought, I probably won't ever write a book, because Huffington Post wouldn't even publish one article. And all of this has been blocking my writing and my heart and it's been part of what has been hurting me.
I was talking to my friend Nick last night, and as I was telling him I just started to cry. Everything was and had been much too much all week. He told me such simple words that luckily sunk in. I believe in you. He reminded I have not and never will write for mass appeal. If Huffington Post called me tomorrow and asked me to publish my work, of course I'd jump through hoops to make it happen. But I don't need it anymore. It would have fed my ego self- but not my soul self. I needed to go through there to get to here though.
I am not writing so the Huffington Post can tell me I am good enough or not good enough. I am writing for my Sisters and my Family. I'm writing for Jamie in Kirkwood, for Jarka in Slovakia, for Barbara and Lani in Fresno, for Jennifer in Indiana, for Nick in West Hollywood and for every single one of you who has felt more understood and more connected after reading these words. We need each other.
And MOST importantly, I am writing for my boys and for every person given the label of different.
And last night I realized I THOUGHT my disappointment but I hadn't FELT it. So I finally felt it. I just sat there outside on a lounge chair and FEELED away. I cried. I felt sad and disappointed and angry and confused and then resolved. And then poof. It was mostly gone. I finally stopped checking my email every 18 seconds today to see if Huff Post wrote back. It was finally gone and I was free.
My time will come exactly when it is supposed to come and not a second before. And my words were on Momastery- which is absolutely a HUGE honor. Funny how easy I forgot that and spiraled down to somewhere ugly.
I will still write a book called, Little Lightbulbs Daily. And it will be about Life and all the little moments when lights came on in our World. It will be glorious.
Today I even got to go shopping to buy myself a Congratulations on NOT getting published by the Huff Post gift. I told you retail therapy works on the small things! All on sale too Friend!
I am nothing less because of this. My words mean nothing less because of this. In fact, I am more. I have learned. When I FEEL it through, pain and disappointment teaches me. And when I (over)THINK it through, pain and disappointment hurts me and breaks me down.
I am brave about autism. I have made friends with it. Don't equate that with me liking it, I just know its not going anywhere anytime soon, so I've set it a place at the dinner table. Chances are it can't survive my cooking- I've got a strategy, Friend.
Parker at Behavior Therapy today.
I've told autism, Let me intimately get to know you so we can best work together. In doing so I will get to know me better, my triggers, my strengths and my weaker muscles so that I may strengthen them. I don't know if I should call it fighting autism anymore. When I fight it takes energy and it makes me so sad. I hate confrontation. But when I figure out a way to make peace with things, a way to get along- even if I don't like it or get it- I am so much more at peace in my heart.
I'm a lover, not a fighter.
I'm serious, Parker would NOT put this book down last night. Smart cookie that boy.
I don't know the answer for you, but you do. Tell me Friend, is it possible for you to make peace with the very thing that hurts and scares you too?
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