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Speaking Truth

My sister wrapped her arms around me as the tears began to flood  my eyes and spill down against my hot cheeks." I failed!" The words came out broken and caught dry in the back of my throat. I tried  to swallow that choking feeling. " I thought I could do it,"  Words finally began to escape between sobs. "I failed!" I repeated myself louder, wanting to define my sense of defeat, and disappointment, but no more words would come out. Instead, I buried my face into her long, brown hair and closed my eyes. She pulled me in and began to speak truth to me." You didn't fail, you tried." Her gentle words soothed me into a puddle of emotion as I sat hard against the couch and pulled myself away to recompose. "You tried." she said, looking into my eyes, then kissed the top of my head. "You tried."

Last year, I experienced a life threatening illness that not only left me fighting for my life, but also learning how to manage a new life, a different life. While so thankful to be alive, learning to walk again, fight fatigue, and process thoughts properly also left me unable to contribute financially to our little family. An opportunity came up for me to go to work for a few weeks, so I jumped at the chance.  After a day or two, I quickly realized that I simply wasn't physically or mentally ready for the demands I had placed upon myself and had to stop. Of course my brain translated this as," You failed and you will never have worth because you can't earn any money." Cue my little sister coming for a visit last Tuesday evening. I held it together until the hug. What is it about the hug that ushers in the tears?
 A week later, still exhausted but tears wiped dry and my head held high again, I know that I gave it my all. with every last ounce of my being I really tried. So begins my new journey. My son told me that I hadn't failed, I was now just self aware of my limitation. My daughters on the other hand, thought I was paying them back for their teenage years, causing them to worry about me the way I worried about them. Finally settled in my heart and  tears put away, I have come to the realization that I will not be returning to work.  However, I WILL be returning to being frugal, creative, and generous in ways that use my talents, skills and passions to their fullest potential. I will budget, plan, cook, sew and garden. I will take pictures, learn new things and foster my relationships.

I find very often that we experience the hard things silently. We believe we need to walk the journey alone.  In solitude, we sometimes wrestle with anxiety, panic and depression. We battle self doubt and contend with the voices in our heads that so desperately wants to tear us down and often let others determine our value. We conjure up images of what we think our lives should look like by comparing them to others. We allow ourselves to be influenced by ads and magazines who speak their version of success and beauty. What if our worth was found simply in who we are and our beauty really was found on the inside? What if we valued our natural strength, talents and  abilities? What if we began to speak truth into the lives of the people around us, encouraging them to recognize their own strengths and value? I can move forward into this newly settled role at home because my husband, my sweet friends and my beautiful family have spoken truth into my life this past year. You are my heroes. Lets go forth encouraging and speaking truth to one another. We are all on a journey of some kind.


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