You hear this seasons term all the time, I'm sure. I hear it--and something inside me pushes it away as if it's some jargon to use to get away with quitting easily, or moving on with no regret or shame. No doubt I struggle to accept the reality that there are indeed seasons of life- changes that come, that need to come, that are inevitable or best for you, or me, or heck, everyone involved...the greater cause perhaps.
The last nine months I have pretty much dedicated every spare second to working for my church as the Children's Ministry Director. It was one of the scariest, exciting and challenging seasons (there I go with that word) of my life thus far. It was there that I discovered I'm actually more capable than I gave myself credit for. It was there that I discovered leading people was both humbling and so beautiful. It was there that I discovered how deeply I need people, relationships, one-on-one interactions with sweet souls more often than I'd ever made time for in my life prior. It was there that I let so many new people in-- sharing my life with them--in turn watching my little girls fully embraced and loved by people who have now become like family.
That season has been so rich, and so full, and yes, so very busy if I'm being honest with myself--but also so life giving. It changed me.
Pretty interesting that it kind of correlates to my life, huh? I'm actually having a little bit of an ah-ha moment as I type. Somehow, I've always admired the rich friendships and bonds and beautiful blossoming relationships others had...but I've never been really willing to dig deep and do the work in my own life to get there, too. Until this past year.
I recently decided it was time for me to step down from leading this ministry for a variety of reasons, but mainly, I really knew that personally my focus and balance was off. My kids are so little, and gosh, their lives are flying by. I just really want to be a good mama to them and for the sake of sticking with a theme, I want to stop-enjoy their beautiful flowery goodness, take too many photos, be able to be present in mind and not feel stretched beyond my capacity.
It's pretty dang timely that I'm reading The Gifts of Imperfection, and sweet 'ole sucker-punch-you author Brene Brown just happens to be the master researcher in Shame. She says that "Shame is basically the fear of being unlovable --it's the total opposite of owning our own story and feeling worthy. Shame is the intensely painful feeling or experience of believing that we are flawed and therefore unworthy of love and belonging."
..."Shame keeps worthiness away by convincing us that owning our stories will lead to people thinking less of us."
So true, right? The human struggle. We want love and belonging and we don't want people to think less of us, because, gasp--the horror.
I am so grateful that I'm part of a community that both recognizes seasons of life as a real thing, and also quickly lays fears of shame to rest.
I now have my own flower bed of relationships that will not just go away-- but grow deeper and fuller the more I care and invest into them, especially as I have more capacity to do so. I grew, I changed. God knew exactly what he was doing and wove me right into all of it.
I am worthy, I am loved, I still belong. I'm owning my story.
|print by Jackie (one of the beautiful souls I met along the way)|