I bet you’d never guess the dirty details going on behind my shiny smile.
But I imagine we’re all trying to put our best selves forward to the world, aren’t we?
Considering what each of us carries- loads of loneliness, piles of regret, heaps of hurt, stacks of difficult situations- it’s a miracle we’re all not lying helpless on the side of the road.
There’s no telling how many heavy emotions we lug around with us while we look all hunky-dory on the outside. We’re masters at presentation, aren’t we?
Our dearest relationships could be imploding, our bodies craving rest and retreat, our hearts pulsing with envy or anger and still we cut up veggies for a dinner salad, read a story to our kids before bed, manage to brush our teeth, and wake up the next day ready to face a morning meeting- dressed and smelling fresh.
How is this possible?
We are stubborn creatures, innately persistent and persevering to our very core. We launch ourselves into the day and give it our best shot.
It seems we come uniquely equipped to endure the bumps, bruises, and bloody scrapes we obtain along the way.
Even with deeply lodged trauma simmering beneath our multi-layered soul, hidden stories locked up within us, waiting to be acknowledged, even though we are wounded and sick, sometimes chronically so, here we are.
Here. We. Are.
Resilient and fragile.
Strong and soft.
Hopeful and depressed.
Peaceful and stressed.
Smiling and sad.
We are teeming with tensions, a walking warzone.
Perhaps, the test for wellness shouldn’t be a matter of perfect health or precise habits, but in our ability to hold the paradox.
And listen up, it doesn’t require skill or practice to hold paradox. We’re already doing it, by being alive, by being human.
Paradox is inseparable from who we are.
Certainly with time, age, and experience, we improve and dare I say begin to delight in the incongruities we encounter, realizing this is a part of what it means to have a flourishing existence.
But for today, let’s settle into this fact- we’re doing it.
If you’re like me, you might feel a little beat up, battle weary, or seasick from the constant unending waves, from the seemingly schizophrenic-like state you always appear to be in, but please, please don’t worry about it.
You are here. You are human. You are holding the paradox the best you can and some days you do it with wobbly legs and a weary smile.
And that’s perfectly OK.
Beautifully written Charissa! I can relate so with these tensions and holding the paradox of life – Thank-you for putting these complexities into words! So helpful to remember that I’m not the only one navigating the hard work of being a human being!