I sit now in my car after dropping the boys off at Behavior Therapy. I am still in the parking lot, stuck. Glued. Sweat trickles down my back. I feel a little crazy to be sitting here still with so many things I could and should be doing with now only two hours remaining before I have to pick them up, but some days it’s just so hard to leave. So hard. I feel like I am missing something, forgetting something really important. Not like my phone or keys – but like a head or a liver or a heart. Two hearts in fact.
I need them to teach me the world so much more than they need me to do the same- which is a staggering amount. Which is why I’m still here. In the parking lot. Lost. Scattered potato chip crumbs canvasing the floor. A random sock without a mate, a fossil french fry at least a week old, greasy random finger prints reflecting off muted surfaces; all reminders of life. My car feels as messy and undone as you do inside.
I know you’ve needed me lately. You’ve needed my rationale, my ability to put things into perspective. You’ve needed help off the ledge. And I’m sorry I haven’t been there. I’ve rolled my eyes at your vast and endless neediness. No matter how many times I’ve silenced your thoughts with my words, it just never seems to be enough. It sometimes makes me wonder if I should bother...
But when I am quiet and not at all angry at anything in the world, I remember your vast neediness also makes you good. Good in ways I am not. Sensitive in ways I cannot be. It makes empathy ooze out your toes. It makes you love like sunshine shines across the dessert valley. It makes you care more about others than about you- which also means that sometimes you care more what "they" think than what you think about your writing. It's all part of you. Words are how you feel seen. Words are how you love. Words make you feel vulnerable. But it also makes you notice the diamond reflection on water and be moved from it, somewhere deep inside for days. It makes you smell the honeysuckle while walking to your car and just stop, eyes closed breathing in deep, not caring how you look to others while you are deeply experiencing the world. It’s not all bad, not at all sweet one, and I’m sorry I don’t tell you that more often.
You are the perfect combination of you. No one is better.
Yesterday as you were driving down a busy cross-sectioned street all the political signs posted up and down the road jumped out at you collectively.
There were so many they all turned into one big horizontal blur. None of the specific signs stood out anymore. You said that’s how you feel. Like one big part of the blur. Why does my story even matter? You asked…and I couldn’t and didn’t answer you then. I didn’t know what to say so I just ignored you. But here I sit, in my car, and you have my complete attention. And now I know better how to respond to your starving heart.
Your story matters, simply because it does. Listen to me right now- your story is important. We need to hear it.
I believe each each person has an honest story to share. Our stories are the concrete foundation of our lives in which we build our current house. We can reinvent our house a million different ways. Contemporary, Farm House, Bungalow, Tudor, Victorian, but the foundation will never change. We need to find ways to work with it the way it was already poured. Our stories are the most important gifts we have to give; others and ourselves. When shared, our stories make us all feel a little less alone. A little more understood.
The hard, crushing parts of our stories are a ledge. It’s so easy to fall either way. Some people stuff it down deep inside, constantly stepping a foot on its head and shoving it further down each time it threatens to come up. Weakening and diluting it over time.
Let it out now. And some people fall the way that saves them, that makes them better. In honest ways that teach others how to fall too. They stand on the top of the highest spot and scream it out. Spitting while they scream-without fear or self-consciousness. Crying out pain, ego, and lack of security while fully committing to something new. It doesn’t matter how others receive your story, it only matters that you tell it.
Your questions- Why me? Why is my story important? There are some things we have to do, and only in the doing is where we find the answers. After the doing comes the answers. You tell it simply because you have to. Because that constant waking burning irritating desire inside is the Universe’s clue to you. TELL YOUR STORY. Yes, everyone has an important story to tell, and some just want to connect and share it over coffee. Not everyone needs to write. That is your nudge. Write, the Universe is conspiring through whispers and yells- write. You are so lucky to feel it, to acknowledge it. You have to write because you wouldn’t be okay if you didn’t. That’s an important clue.
There are no rules to this thing. No one is going to make you. No one will think less of you if you don’t. But your words and perspective are needed, they are your gift and you cannot keep them inside on the dusty shelf of forgotten dreams. You will find in your story telling that you’ve never felt calmer and more raw and terrible and insecure. It will stir up things you had carefully folded and filed away. They won’t be put back as nicely. It will be messy and incomplete and never for more than a second at a time will you stand back and say, yes, this is perfect. But you must do it anyway.
Do you remember the other day- you saw the tiniest perfect little flower stand out in a sea of green blades? You got down on the sidewalk for closer inspection.
What is that? It was so perfect and so little and so complete. Maybe it's actually a weed, you wondered. It doesn't matter, it made you smile because it was beautiful. You looked up and there scattered throughout the lawn were more little yellow beauties, standing out. You have never even noticed them, until this moment, but they were all the same, and all important and beautiful in their own right.
You are not a political sign, my friend. You are a perfect little flower. Your passion is important, it makes the world beautiful. The more beautiful in the world- the better. Our story is important, even if there are already stories all around. You must tell it for you.
Your calm rational voice inside
PS- this letter is for EVERYONE who may have a mean voice inside and needs a nudge to share their heart xoxo Chrissy
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