The Beauty of Vulnerability
“Vulnerability is not about winning or losing; it’s having the courage to show up and be seen when we have no control over the outcome. Vulnerability is not weakness; it’s our greatest measure of courage.” ~ Brene´ Brown
If I were to be completely honest with you, it took me a very long time to show up and even begin to accept that I had Lupus. Instead, I lived in a little land called “Denial”. Anyone else every been there?
I had a tendency to want to ignore / deny negative or sad events in life. But I also learned I was doing that with so much more in my life and it was becoming toxic; a toxicity that I now understand only created unnecessary stress (Lupus’s worst enemy) and held me back from having the strength to push back in the moments that truly mattered in life – like surviving a potentially life-threatening disease. Or, being strong enough to take care of a loved one when they were sick, starting my business, going back to school, being present with family and friends and the list goes on…
Or heck, even telling people, “no I am sorry but I cannot make it” was very hard for me. I would have rather pushed myself to the unhealthiest I’ve ever been just so I showed up and everything appeared to be OK when really it wasn’t (on many levels). Did you catch the word appeared in that last sentence?
Denial blocks oneself from opening up and being vulnerable; opening up and living our truths (as my close friend Carrie once told me – I will never forget those words). To be vulnerable is not being weak, it is actually about becoming stronger. Accepting your truth then standing back and asking yourself – OK, so how are we going to handle this, Self? Oh yes, and allowing others in when we need a little help is OK too; we weren’t put on this earth alone for a reason right?!
For whatever reason in life, I have Lupus. My main regret of how I chose to live with Lupus in the beginning was that I did not allow myself to become vulnerable sooner. Not only has it helped me live a better life while having this disease (and help others living in the fear I once did) but it has helped me face so many other not-so-easy moments in life with an open heart, mind and strength. And hey, I am absolutely fine telling people, “I’m sorry but I cannot make it.”
No matter what our struggles are in life, I believe that being vulnerable first is exactly what allows us to face them head on. Being willing to say “yep, I have (fill-in the blank)” allows us to accept our reality.
Within vulnerability lies strength. Within strength lies healing. Within healing lies living your truth. Living your truth creates freedom to accept the things we cannot change.
Sending out so much love and strength to each and every one of you!