Saturday, January 3, 2015

shine, and be comfortably flawed

Hey. Here I am. My blogging fingers are a little rusty, so forgive me as I stretch them out.

Well, I'm a bit at a loss for words, which is a bit unusual for me, as my long winded blog posts in archives past can testify. But, it is the end of the year. And it was a big one. Lots of changes and learning and growing going on behind the scenes here. Big moves, first heartbreaks, solo voyages, lonely nights, new friends. 2014 was not what I expected it to be. This time last year, I was still waiting to hear from college. I wasn't sure if I was gutsy enough to fly across the world solo. I was a bit afraid of the person I wanted to be, hiding behind a mask of uncertainty and unmade decisions. I knew what I wanted, but I didn't think I was brave enough to go for it.

This year I learned that I am capable of more than I thought. I can feel more than I thought. I cared more than I thought. I was braver than I thought I could be. If there's one thing I've learned/discovered this year it is that I can be brave. Whether I was forced to become brave or forced to accept bravery I already possessed, I did some scary things this year, from flying across the world alone to job interviews to moving away from home to meeting with professors. I've had to grow up this year, and honestly, independence is a really neat feeling. It's liberating. In a way that includes enjoying new responsibilities and obligations. Like grocery shopping for milk and peanut butter and having a calling in church. Like online shopping and going to crossfit because you want to. Like remembering to wash your sheets and pay room and board. Those things are exhilarating, in a really mundane, ordinary, potentially monotonous way that is quite exciting when you're a brand new college student learning to chase what you want in life.

I've heard that a lot of people do this thing where they have a theme for the year. A word that sums up what they want to accomplish in the next three hundred and sixty five days. That sounds rather exciting, I think. I haven't quite decided yet. If I had to pick a word for 2014 it would be brave. Brave in a way I have never considered it before. Brave in a way that really probably isn't grammatically correct, but in a way that means something special to me, which I guess is the point. So I've decided to come up with a theme at the beginning of the year rather than trying to tie everything together at the end.

And the word I've chosen is shine. With the subtitle of being comfortably flawed.

I guess it started with the sign Megan gave me for Christmas, and it just kind of built from there. This year, I want to shine. But not in an obvious way. You see, my fatal flaw, my hamartia, to allude to John Green, is a strong tendency towards perfectionism. It's something I've been trying to come to terms with because it seems to affect every aspect of my life. It's why I'm such a people pleaser, and a horrid procrastinator, and a goody two shoes. I want to be perfect. I want everyone to like me. I want to do everything right. And this perfectionism is so strong that I tell myself it is better to fail without trying than it is to fail after I've done my best. I'm afraid of failing in school, in friendships, in love, in- dare I say it- life, that I don't always give 100 percent. So by giving myself the theme shine, my goal is to give this next year my all in every aspect of life. I want to work harder at school, save more money to accomplish those big British city dreams of mine, I want to be there for my friends and family as much as I can be. I want to show myself, not others, what I am truly capable of when I try my absolute best.

Which means I will inevitably fail because no one can do everything right all the time. And I realllllly don't like that. Which is why my subtitled theme for the year is being comfortably flawed. Over the past couple of years I've been trying to come to terms with who I am and the kind of person I want to be. Which means I've had to face several glaring flaws in the face. And as much as I try to hide from them and pretend like they're not there, they exist and I need to handle them. So this year, as I try to give everything my all and inevitably fail, I want to remind myself that it's ok to mess up. And to be comfortable with being imperfect.

I don't know what's going to happen this year. I don't know who I'm going to meet or how I'm going to get hurt or how happy I could end up. I just know that I've grown tired of having expectations set for myself that I always seem to fall short of. So this year my resolution is just to try my best, even when that means messing up.

How's that for a jump back in to the blogosphere?

Sincerely, mad


  1. "over the past couple of years i've been trying to come to terms with who i am and the kind of person i want to be." YES. wow you nailed it.

    love your theme, love this whole post, and most of all: love YOU! so happy you're back to blogging. i've missed reading your posts girl! xx

  2. You have always been a light to me, but I am excited for you to see for yourself how bright you truly are. Shine on! Shine on! Shine on!