Every now and then a thought comes to mind, and something sitting beside it whispers, “Yeah, move this one to the head of the line. This one needs sharing now.”
Today has been one of those times. The thought that has been nudging me for a couple of days insists on being shared.
So here goes.
What you see here is only a snapshot out of the thousands that are taken. What you see here is only a sliver of all that is.
What you see here is not representative of all that I live.
This is accurate about my blog, about our Facebook posts, and about what we tweet or pin or post on instagram.
Each of them just a blip of what goes on, and then it is only what any one of us is comfortable showing.
There’s so much more that isn’t.
I’ve been thinking about this in the context of my Daddy telling me many times, “You compare, you lose.”
And you know why?
Because we don’t know. We don’t know what all someone else is going through. We don’t know what they don’t post about, what goes on in their home when they aren’t on Facebook or taking pictures to share later. We. Don’t. Know.
My life is good. I’m very, very fortunate to have what I need and so much more.
But what I don’t write about sometimes are the really messy times. The times I ugly cry or worse, ugly yell. The times I sit in traffic and mutter (mostly) under my breath about the crazy drivers around me. The projects I start and then give up on. The projects I never start. Mount Washmore piled up on Cap’s couch waiting for my attention. How high the sink of dirty dishes gets before it’s on my nerves enough for me to get in there to remedy the situation. How sometimes my children have to call my name more than once to get my attention. The OCD that makes even me a little crazy. The tears I cry over things that happen because of decisions I made and the things that happen that I couldn’t prevent. The arguments over clean rooms, messy rooms, not playing at the house around the corner, showing each other respect, what’s for supper, whose turn it is to do (fill in the blank here) first, lights not turned off, toilets not flushed, dirty clothes on the floor, and so much more that my head is spinning (and not from the vertigo, I don’t think, it seems a little better today).
Here’s the thing.
I’m real. I’m human.
We all are.
And while this isn’t an excuse for poor behavior, it does mean that I’m not perfect. None of us are really. Except for well, maybe, perfectly broken. That one could work.
And it’s in that brokenness that I find myself. The real-est me. The one who has to dig deep and try harder.
And that’s when my soul grows.
Someone up in this brain of mine thought we might all need to hear that.
We’re all messy, broken, hurting, hurters, loving, loved, and beautiful.
So next time someone’s story or comment or picture or even their presence right in front of you causes you to question where you are, what you are worth, why you are even here, know that this is only a glimpse–a glimpse they are letting you see, and that’s it.
There’s so much more than what meets the eye, as we are standing on the outside looking in through the only open curtain.
Tonight I’m thankful for a story shared by a guest speaker at Evening Prayer tonight. She has quite the presence–tall, lovely, excellent speaker, and she exudes a peace and tranquility that is a rare treat to find in a person. She told the story of shopping and having to stand at a counter for twenty minutes before being addressed at all. She was frustrated. Well, of course, right? In that moment I saw her as human and broken just like me. I saw myself mirrored in her eyes, and I realized that the grace I offered her in the “well of course you were frustrated,” I could also offer myself, because we are not all that different.
I love how she finished her story. She had a decision to make. To be THAT person–complaining and letting the world know about her much-justified frustrations or to be THAT person who is patient and kind and handles it with grace.
We all have that choice, don’t we? To be frustrated that we’re not having the kind of awesome day that Jocelyn just posted about, that Twila got a new car and we’re still driving our old one that breaks down every 52.5 miles. That Junior got a promotion with a huge bonus and we can barely eke by on what we’re making now, no raise in sight.
We have a choice. We can be frustrated and feel less than–
or we can know that these are just glimpses into the lives of folks whose whole stories we really don’t know.
And we can be okay with who and where we are. And be THAT person.
The one who doesn’t compare, the one who wins, the one who is content with where she/he is and is all in.
Wishing you all a day full of learning everyone else is just as REAL as you are.
Love to all.