This is not exactly the blog post I was ever planning on writing, or ever voicing outside of my mind. This is the blog post where I share an overwhelming apology to so many people, but most of all, myself.
As a child and a teenager, there was right and there was wrong. Things were black and white, yes or no. Honestly, I needed that in those days when daily life was so unsettled and unsure. I was a hippie chick, a skater chick, a drama nerd, a track and field wannabe, a this, a that, and nothing. I look back and note, however, that my high school world cultures teacher saw my aptitude before I ever realized it – she requested the high school pay for me to attend a leadership conference. It was great, and telling that my world cultures teacher of all of them saw this – I ended up with a doctorate in geography.
But, as I went off to college and started on that journey of finding myself, I realized … slowly … that the world is not black and white. I lived in many shades of grey. However, I still made judgements like the world was black and white. This is a friend, not that. This is good, that is bad. On and on and on. I almost can’t stand how monotone my view of the world was. I know exactly where it came from, and while I was a strong, independent young woman, I was not exactly independent in my thoughts. I need to apologize to the world and the universe for that.
I have been struggling with a lot of choices I made, a lot of coping with choices I didn’t make, and how to forgive those that fit into that black and white judgement zone. It’s so easy to say that this person is horrible because something they did was horrible. I could make a snap decision, stick to it, door slam the hell out of it, and move on with the wind. Except when I couldn’t escape it myself.
Recently, I have not always been the good, polite, wonderful person I thought I was. I worked so hard to do things the “right” way and my world collapsed. In my desperation to come out of the failures, I made some missteps. That is all on me. But I also know that I would not have survived without some of those missteps (certainly, a lot of them I can still do without!). The me that thinks of the world as good and bad, black and white, got on the soapbox and charged at my esteem and confidence with abandon. The shame of what I had done … engulfed me into this pity and hate-filled pit of self loathing.
The past two weeks, I have come out of the fog, a little bit at first and then a whole lot. You know what I have found? The good, polite, wonderful person that I am. I am not bad, even when I made a misstep or two. I’m just a shade of grey, scratch that, I am blue … I am a damn brilliant blue … instead of fitting into that perfect or imperfect judgement box of my youth. Amazingly enough, I have finally accepted that and I’ve started to notice all of the color again. It is not only glorious for me personally, but the fading of the judgmental part of my persona, that I clung to for so long, has faded away.
We all have to make judgements on what is right for us, wrong for us, and what is okay in our lives. While there are still things that are bad and lines that should never be crossed, the small box I put myself in prevented me from ever feeling like I deserved a life or love. I’m working on that and I’m going to claim the love I deserve … from myself.
Eventually, I will claim it from another, but until then … watch out for my many adventures in the life of color.