I’m an imperfect mess of a human being.
This is not new information to most of the people who read this blog or, y’know, have ever met me. I have been listening to so much music lately and stumbled across a song from Mary Lambert called “Secrets.” (It’s apparently been out for a while and was a pretty big hit, but that’s not the point of this post). The song is a masterful work of public confession in which Lambert openly confronts some personal truths that are often left unspoken in our society. One of the lines in the song goes like this:
They tell us from the time we’re young
to hide the things that we don’t like about ourselves
I know I’m not the only one
who spent so long attempting to be someone else,
I’m over it.
Does that speak to you the same way it speaks to me? Are you “over it,” too? I don’t actively try to be someone else, but social media and to a certain extent just being a person IN the world can breed the construction of a sort of “public face” — a mask we unknowingly put on so we don’t have to be vulnerable and risk exposure of our most private selves.
I know people lament the lack of privacy in the age of the internet, and certainly there’s something to be said for protecting yourself and your loved ones where necessary. I can’t deny that. But I do not find “privacy for the sake of privacy” a very helpful strategy for those of us who wish to do the hard work of loving kindness, doing justice, and walking humbly with the Sacred. From whom are you trying to hide?
I used to guard my Facebook page like Fort Knox, and I will continue to do so with personal information that I don’t feel comfortable sharing, especially as it pertains to others. But if I’m going to truly help folks, meet them in their hardship, and reach them with compassion, I must make a commitment to authenticity and openness on my own part.
All of this is to say that if you have recently been “friended” by me on social media but don’t “know” me, the reason is simply that I’m working to build an interfaith, public ministry of love, hope, kindness, authenticity, and wellness and would love to “meet you” in that endeavor.
If you’re in a hurry to know me and for the sake of openness, I’ll spill some “secrets” here. Who am I? I am so much and so little.
In no particular order, I am:
An Imperfect Child of God, Wife, Mother, Writer, Partner, Friend, Daughter, Sister, Niece, Granddaughter, GEEK, nerd, UCC Member, Minister, Seminarian, Pescetarian, Sometime-Vegan, Grad student, Coach, Mentee, Mentor, Reader, Viewer, Fan, Whedonite, Helper, Military Spouse, Amateur Fitness Enthusiast, Lupus-Warrior, Depression-Fighter, Anxiety-Ninja, Spiritual Pluralist, Interfaith Cooperator, Lover of my “neighbor,” and more.
In those roles I am joyful, faithful, doubting, loving, passionate, upset, serious, silly, depressed, anxious, fun, boring, difficult, easy-going, stubborn, interesting, challenging, frustrating, strong, weak, soft, kind, sometimes cruel, intelligent, really stupid, vulnerable, closed-off, inquisitive, gullible, supportive, uplifting, careful, careless, over-dramatic, reserved, prayerful, wasteful, liberal, progressive, depressing, overbearing, affirming, funny, witty, obtuse, determined, ignorant, prideful, and humble.
I am more and, sometimes, I am less. But I am always enough.
Who are you?
What are you?
I bet you are many of those things, many more, and many less. But you, too, are always enough.
I wish you grace and peace as we walk through this world side-by-side whether here in cyberspace or out in the beautiful and terrifying physical universe of ours.