This post is going to be a little bit different. More reflection, less self-help. The topic is
me in real life
because I often feel like I live two lives: my on-line life and my everyday life.
Social media all but requires us to create an online persona. For a blogger and writer like me, that persona is also a “brand.”
My brand is pretty, whimsical, light-hearted and inspiring. I love Gilbert, chocolate, organization and helping people. I pursue joy, celebrate successes (everyone’s, not just mine) and chase beauty. I’m a wife, mama, volunteer and servant minister. I keep it positive and uplifting. I never mention controversial topics and I do NOT do drama.
All of that is absolutely true. But that’s not the whole picture.
There is a lot more to me than that. I am actually very opinionated. I DO judge people because I watch them and think, “That could work for me,” or “I could never do that.” And, yes, sometimes I just think, “That’s unbelievably stupid.” I bite my nails, I hate doing housework, I eat my lunch in front of the TV and I thank God for video games because without them, I’d get very little done during breaks from school.
Did you know that my father was a pastor in northern Florida for most of my childhood? Yes, I was a Preacher’s Kid growing up. Did you know that I got really mad at God when my mom was diagnosed with breast cancer before my senior year of high school, partly because I really wanted that summer to be “The Summer of Tab?”
Did you know that our first son was supposed to be a home birth and that I ended up being an emergency transport to the hospital, and he was born less than 15 minutes after we arrived? I didn’t get to see him or hold him until an hour later and I don’t remember them telling me he was a boy.
Did you know that I battled anxiety for a period of years? That I had a miscarriage? That I have a hard time maintaining eye contact? That my hands sweat when I’m nervous? That I taught fourth grade? That I didn’t kiss my husband until our wedding day?
I bet there’s a lot you don’t know. There are many stories I have not told yet. There’s a lot of my life that doesn’t necessarily fit into my “brand.”
I already told you, I am a writer.
More and more lately, I’m realizing that writing is The Thing I love most and I’ve gotten away from it. I’ve warned you that I’ll be sharing more of my story with you and it’s about time that I made good on that promise.
I have a lot to tell you.
Thank God, my brand is also about authenticity, knowing who you are and Whose you are and being on this journey together.
I owe it to you–and to myself–to honor my story.
I turn my camera toward my roses and keep the hallway strewn with flip flops and toys out of the frame but I think it’s time you saw me in real life. It’s time to show you the mess, the struggle and, yes, the wins and successes, too–whether they fit into my “brand” or not.
I’ve grown to love the me in real life and I hope that in sharing her, you’ll be inspired to show the real-life version of yourself, too.