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Posts Tagged ‘improve’

Lately I have been spending altogether too much time thinking about all of the things I wish I could change about myself. Not necessarily physical things (although there are a few of those) but mostly “inside” things.

I’ve been thinking that if I had a magic wand, I would wish to be more patient, less likely to hurry everyone through life. I would wish to be the kind of person who encouraged my kids to try to tie their own shoes even though it takes three times as long and we’re already late.

I wish I was one of those people who exudes friendly; someone who welcomes everyone in, friends, acquaintances, strangers. Everyone.

I wish I was less critical, less likely to find fault and more likely to point out the positive. ‎I’ve always snickered at people who spend all their time on the bright side, it seemed like such a boring place to be. But maybe they’ve figured out something I haven’t? After all, they do seem to smile a lot more than I do.

I wish I spoke more softly, laughed more softly, expressed my opinions more softly. I always seem to be so loud, inside my head and out there in the world.

And because I don’t have a magic wand, and I can’t just wave it around in the air and “poof” become the person I think I’m supposed to be, I’ve been trying to change the old fashioned way. I’ve been taking deep breaths and biting my lips. I’ve choked back the “we’re running lates” and the “did you see what she’s wearings” and put a smile on my face even when I didn’t feel at all like smiling.

I thought if I tried hard enough I could turn into her. Her, that woman over there, the one who seems to have it all together and figured out. Her, the woman who seems so happy.

Until I realized that if I get rid of all of those things, I don’t know who that woman is anymore. The things I don’t like about myself are just as much a part of me as the things I do. They’re all pieces of the same puzzle, and without them the picture doesn’t make any sense.

So I have slowly come to the understanding that improving doesn’t always mean changing. Rather, maybe it just means softening the sharp corners, turning the volume down one notch but not the whole way, smiling extra big when I feel like it but still letting a frown slip in when I’m feeling broken. ‎Maybe improvement is done in small degrees, not broad strokes.

Because no matter how hard I try, I don’t know how to be her.

I just know how to be me.

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