No one sees your “little” wins.
When you get out of bed and brush your teeth in the morning after a sleepless night.
When you reach out to your friend to check on them while you’re also falling apart.
When you finally tell your significant other that “you can’t cook tonight, you’re too tired.”
When you allow yourself to enjoy that donut, after society and every voice in your head has told you that you shouldn’t.
When you move the dishes, one by one, from the sink to the dishwasher.
When you take your car to get an oil change after months of avoiding it.
When you tell your boss that you need a day off to rest.
When you let yourself cry instead of raising your voice to yell.
When you show your vulnerability to your friends instead of agreeing with what they say.
When you admit that you’re too scared to go out during a pandemic even though it seems like others have moved on.
When you google the name of a therapist.
When you make an appointment for a physical after years of PTSD from sexual assault.
When you put your phone down and give yourself space from the constant connection.
We’re living in a colosseum that erupts with applause when people share their superficial wins. It’s easy to let the noise drown out your personal victories.
The “likes” and “comments” don’t flood in when you deliver groceries to your neighbors like they do when you post yourself on the beach in a bikini.
The cheers are nowhere to be found when you find the energy to pull that last cumbersome load out of the dryer and haul it up to your room to be folded.
But it’s not you that has it wrong. It’s the audience. It’s the social media prescription we’ve all been taking once daily for years.
Don’t let the praise you can’t hear make you forget the triumph it is that you’re here. Don’t let what the world decides to reward make you forget that you’re moving forward. And that you’re overcoming while you’re becoming.
So, you—if no one else claps for you today, just know that I will. And I know how hard it’s been. And you’re doing okay…not just okay, great. And even if I don’t really know you, I love you. Because I am you. And your wins aren’t little…they’re huge.
They deserve a damn standing ovation.