Confession: being seen is incredibly scary.
I have started a few different blogs over the years. But they have been in the far corners of the internet, far away from me and my name.
I knew I wanted to write, but I didn’t want people to know it was me—I was afraid people would think I was weird or that my ideas were dumb.
And people write novels all the time under false names, so why couldn’t I do that? What was the harm?
I made a comment a while ago to a friend that I didn’t use Facebook much. She said she knew, and she understood that I liked my privacy. I didn’t correct her at the time, but I knew that it wasn’t the whole truth.
The truth wasn’t that I liked my privacy—the truth was that I was hiding. Just like I was hiding from my writing.
Something switched this year, and I realized that I was ready to start owning all parts of myself.
I was ready to start owning my voice as it is, in its pure expression. I did not want to hide anymore. I was ready to accept myself as is and share myself with the world.
But wow, talk about vulnerability.
I understood why I always kept my distance from what I was writing. It is scary as hell to pour your heart into something and stand back and wait to see if people will accept it.
In sharing this blog, I felt fear, shame, self-judgment, disgust. My arms felt weak, and my chest ached.
No wonder I was hiding before—those feelings shook me to my core.
But now, I know a little bit more about difficult emotions. I know how to breathe into them, to make room for them in my body, and to honor their presence.
I know that when they come up, it is because a younger part of me is feeling unsafe.
That there was a time when there wasn’t room in my world to be seen—where I learned it was safer to silence my voice.
And I needed to do that then.
But I am not eight years old anymore.
I sit with that young part of me, and I listen to her.
Instead of trying to shut her up, or push her away, I welcome her in.
I hear her concerns, and I let her voice her fears.
She tells me that I can’t do this, I can’t be seen. Who do I think I am to be doing this? She tells me it is safer to keep my heart and mouth shut.
I listen to her rant. I tell her how sorry I am that she felt she couldn’t be seen. I remind her that she is beautiful, and she deserves to dance, sing, and create in any way her heart desires. I tell her there is more than enough room for us in this world.
She relaxes a bit; she feels safe with me now. She tells me I might have to come back to her, to remind her we are safe now. I tell her I am more than happy to do that. She is always welcome.
We sit side by side. She has stopped yelling and is happy to share with me her creativity and joy.
She watches as I write, an integrated part of me.
We march on together, ready to show the world our light.