As some of you may know, last week I unearthed a post from my drafts folder and brought it back to life. It was a 2-year-old post and it just felt right to give it some love and attention – finally. And today, I find myself there again. Revisiting the maybe someday post moratorium.
Now, I admit, I’ve been a bit blue lately. It’s winter in New England, and although I’m okay with the weather most of the time, I hate feeling so confined. But more than that, I really long for my normal workout routine and not my modified winter one. I guess you could say I’ve been experiencing some discontent, and perhaps it is this discontent that brings me back to that folder. That ever so quiet nudge that says “open me.”
When I looked at the date of the draft it was from last March. As I read through the post, I clearly remember the day that I wrote it and what inspired it. It was a weekday, lunchtime to be exact and I had gone out to grab a bite to eat. The weather was typical for that time of year: grey, dreary and a bit of rain and snow falling ever so slightly. Just enough to make it wet and messy; and for me to regret that I had on boots with 3” heels. I can remember having to turn on my wipers to clear away the muck that had splashed up on my windshield from the car that had just sped by. And that’s when the idea for the post came to me.
Sometimes I get lost in the moment. That day happened to be one of those days. I’m always amazed at how something that seems so trivial can really turn out to be enlightening. I’m not sure what connected in that act of using the windshield wipers. But one thing was for sure. It reminded me of a time when I was afraid to clear away the so-called muck. And maybe, just maybe, in that instant I understood how all the pieces fit together.
And so I wrote the post below but I never published it. I could give you a million reasons why, but I’m pretty sure I covered that the last time. If you’re curious, you can find out why here.
Again, for me, it boils down to perspective and there are many ways in life that I’ve gained it. And there have been people who have helped me to understand it better too. People like you. The readers, the writers, the conversation starters and the passerby. The people who share their thoughts and their experiences and even those who don’t. Whether you know it or not, somewhere along the way you might be helping someone wipe away that condensation.
So here’s to the person who has a story to tell but isn’t sure whether or not to do so. Here’s to the person who really wants to write a comment and engage in conversation but hasn’t quite mustered the courage to do so. I say go ahead. Take the leap. Accept that voice that is telling you it’s okay to do it. Because you just never know.
As for me, if I hadn’t wiped away the condensation I’m not sure I’d have found my way here to share my stories with you.
Wiping Away the Condensation
Condensation filled the mirror. Yet I was not ready to wipe it away. For wiping it away meant seeing. Seeing meant accepting. And accepting meant change. And that was a trifecta that scared the hell out of me.
I had a professor in undergrad who once said: “if you cannot change something, then tolerate it.” Throughout the years, I’ve often reached for those words. While I felt that there was merit to what he said, I also gleaned new meaning; particularly with respect to change. After all, change is a powerful word and I am continually intrigued by its ability to evoke such a broad range of emotions.
For a long time, I practiced the latter part. I tolerated a toxic environment because I didn’t think I could change it. I tolerated my weight because excuses were easier. I tolerated the drama, chaos and numerous curve balls I found coming my way. And I tolerated the negativity that had besieged me; thereby fortifying a mindset that I couldn’t change things.
You see, what I failed to realize was that I could change things. Maybe not necessarily the circumstances, but I could certainly alter the manner in which I dealt with them.
I could change the way I think.
I could modify my habits to include a healthier lifestyle.
I could believe in me, my abilities and what I’m capable of.
I could think and say “I can” and “I will” instead of “I can’t” or “I won’t.”
And while I couldn’t eliminate the toxicity, I could certainly change the level with which I let it infect me.
Looking back, I was an enabler. I allowed my mindset to fester. It started out small and perhaps unintentional. But it was left unattended, it gained ground and then boom. Full-on inflammation! Crimson red and tender to the touch. Puffy, ugly, starting to seep. I couldn’t ignore it anymore. I had permitted it to enter and now I had to own it.
I had to own that I had let myself become someone other than who I recognized in the mirror. I became complacent in my quest for tolerance and neglected the power of change. I was lost in the intricacy of the maze and I needed to find my way out. I was finally ready to wipe away the condensation from the mirror and face me.
And once I did, I embarked on a cathartic journey – at times long and arduous but definitely worth the miles. I used to think that life had different plans for me. However, as it turns out, I had different plans for life.
Writing from the heart…always.
Thank you for meeting me here. Feel free to read, share, like, comment. Whatever you choose, I’m glad you stopped by.