Feeling like a social outcast was a huge part of my life growing up.
I don’t say this in a “woe is me, pity me” kind of way. I say it as a way of acknowledging what my elementary school, middle school, high school, college self truly felt.
As we grow up, we tend to try to rewrite and explain away how we felt when we were younger. But one thing I’ve learned from the amazing women and speakers at Flourish Week is that we shouldn’t try to retroactively explain away our feelings from when we were younger.
Those were our true feelings in those moments. Our younger brains didn’t have the capacity or the hindsight we have now to logic our way into dismissing our own experiences.
As I’ve thought about this over the last couple of weeks, I’ve been able to recognize how I’ve explained away my younger self’s feelings and how that has affected my ability to show up in life as my true, authentic self. I realize now how this has played a role in my shoving down my own core values, my true self, in order to fit in with the groups I wanted to belong to.
I’m recognizing the people who have always accepted me for me, even when I didn’t accept myself. This stage of recognition and healing, as I’ve learned clearly these last two weeks, is one of the most important steps you may ever take.
I am acknowledging and holding space for my younger self’s feelings.
And I’m ready to start showing up, unapologetically, as me.
I can’t wait for you to meet her. I’m excited to continue uncovering her, as well.