A Phoenix Rising from Words

I often say when I’m ready to say something I will. In my professional life that is definitely the case and I will do it in my own way without being distasteful. In my social life however I missed something in the realm of chutzpah. I need think time to formulate a response. It’s hard to have chutzpah when you don’t formulate the words until you’ve had think time.

For the most part one would describe me as being sanguine. Having faced many moments of adversity I still managed to become a phoenix. I rise from the rubble having learned something new about my strengths and weaknesses.  I manage faster to see how someone else has to work through something than I do myself.  That’s life I suppose.

I realize we are halfway through July, but I’m going to talk New Year’s resolutions. Every year I have put it upon myself to do something measurable like lose 15lbs by March or run two half marathons. But the problem is that if you fail by some numerical margin then you feel as though you have not met your resolution. It’s cyclical and unhealthy.

This year I set out to change but not in a numerical value. It was a habit I had to break. The habit of being harmful to myself in my thoughts, feelings, or words. So I have set out to…. Be kinder to myself. Deter self-shaming thoughts. Deter negative body talking. Not allowing myself to be cruel to myself. I now realize how often I do this to myself.

What I also didn’t realize was that I would face other people’s shaming words. Did I just not realize this before? Do I have a new heightened sense of awareness of these things? I am left dumbfounded by social comments and I walk away scathed. I allow this think time to settle in and I realize how hurt I have really become. For months I have been chewing on one conversation that festered and settled in creating a battle in my head. Where I constantly am questioning myself and how others see me.

From Brett Dennen’s Ain’t No Reason

People walk a tight rope on a razors edge
Carrying their hurt and hatred and weapons
It could be a bomb, or a bullet or a pen
Or thought, or a word or a sentence

This seems unhealthy because it is… until you put your mighty foot down and say – Wait a minute. Wait just a freaking minute. Stop. Stop. Stop that negative self-shaming inner dialogue, because those were their hurtful words not yours. Their words do not define you. You define you and your definition cannot come from their shaming like this. In fact their hurtful words are actually their character not yours.

Sometimes though like a phoenix we must rise from our self-shaming renewed. I have learned so much this year already. About myself, others, and that maybe it wasn’t only gumption but maybe a little chutzpah that I was looking for all along. I still don’t have it. I am still working on this resolution. I am learning that through some shame comes growth. If we do not feel or are unaware of the shame then we will never seek growth and change for improvement. This however is merely damage control and through that there is a positive change in me.

So after stewing the last few months over a hurtful conversation I wrote this last week allowing it to emerge like a phoenix into this blog.

God’s Image

Who are you to shame my body?

I do enough of that on my own. 

My eyes are an array of greens, blues, grays and orange. 

 I’m a square peg. 

My hair is turning white from years of toxic stress. 

Can I take it back? 

I’m really short. Newsflash….

Should I deny my genetic makeup? 

My feet are wrinkled and worn, but they have traveled many miles. 

Can I not see their aging as a sign of their wisdom? 

My freckles are aplenty making a roadmap of summer memories. 

Should I wish them away? 

I carry scars from surgeries that repaired me and gave birth to my children.

Should I regret that for your sake? 

My abdomen is round from sickened ovaries and stretched like a tiger, but both managed to give me two beautiful children. 

Shouldn’t I still be grateful for both? 




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