Isn’t strange how the world unfolds and it all comes together? How you can sit and stare at something for so long until some wonderful genius sees you standing too close to the Monet and shoves you backwards – suddenly there is art.
The last few weeks have been a little like that for me. I’m coming to a place where it’s all making sense. Every obstacle and conflict, every opportunity and inspiration, they’re all coming together to create thousands of lily pads right in front of my very eyes.
You know what all this beauty means don’t you? It means that I was shoved. Shoved for good reason and with good intent, but shoved nonetheless. And do you know what? Being shoved hurts. I spent a lot of last week ruminating and reflecting and then feeling a little bruised by all of my revelations. I’m learning about advocating for myself and speaking up. I’ve come to understand that it is something I struggle with. I like to be amenable. I like to go with the flow. I like to be the easy one. But there’s a balance there, and I realize that I haven’t quite found it.
I know this is something a lot of women struggle with. I read about it. I hear stories from my female friends. I see it all over TV. I suppose finding a confidence in your voice is a right of passage for a woman. But I did not think it would be as difficult as it is. It can be physically uncomfortable for me. It can be an experience that is riddled with doubt and shadowed by a fear of rejection.
Your voice is of value and it should be heard. That is true for each and every individual. The world is a wild and tempestuous place to be. There is not always someone encouraging your voice. It is your responsibility. It is yours to nurture. So I am stepping up and I am speaking up. Thus far, this experience has not been shy of growing pains and awkward exchanges. In fact, I’m in a bit of a growing pain with it now. Because finally, I understand the need for my voice. With that understanding, has come the unsettling dissatisfaction every time I choose not to speak up. I am disappointed in myself. I am disappointed in my experience. The fear of change has finally been outweighed by the fear of staying the same and that is uncomfortable and frustrating sometimes. However, I trust that there are lily pads on the other end of all of this.