When I Count My Blessings I Count You Twice
I have a plaque with this phrase hanging by my front door. Every time I come and go, I am reminded that my blessings outweigh my struggles. Focus on the good stuff—–
Lately I’ve had to remind myself of my many blessings because the past two weeks have been hell– laden with struggles. I am being tested! My Girlfriend Voice consoles me and agrees with my plan. In order to take care of myself, I will pull back on my social commitments and activities. I tell myself, “Put on your oxygen mask first before assisting another passenger”. Slow down. Recalibrate. Listen to your body. Indulge in a little self-care.
In the past I equated struggling with being weak and dammit, I AM NOT WEAK. If I didn’t solve each and every problem–figure things out– then I was a failure. Struggling was NOT ACCEPTABLE. Stupid people struggle. Incompetent people struggle. Struggle = weak = failure.
“Never see her sweat,” was my motto but it was exhausting to operate as the perfect woman. I didn’t allow myself to see how unrealistic it was to be a super hero Mom, supportive friend, patient wife and creative business woman all at the same time. Talk about setting myself up for crisis!
Fortunately I learned and now believe that struggling is an accelerator of growth. Struggling is the indicator light on my dashboard that it is time to pause.
On Thursday night I admitted to my friends that I was in a vulnerable place and needed a quiet weekend for self-care so I cancelled our plans. It reinforced what I already knew —- I have phenomenal friends! Friends, who despite what struggles they are going through, such as the death of a parent or unreasonable job expectations, offer to help ME. I can call on them for a late night chocolate delivery, a shoulder to cry on, a belly laugh, retail therapy—you name it. They are there for me, just a phone call (or text) away. No worries about being judged or criticized. My gals got my back!
What is even better is that my friends don’t rely on my drama to feel important. They don’t require updates, solutions, or explanations. They are not trying to fix, save or remodel me. One gal pal in particular is so good at asking me, “do you want me to strictly listen or are you looking for advice?” Sometimes I just want to say (scream) things out loud and have her listen to my ramblings. Sometimes I need her advice. Sometimes I want to hear about her life so I can momentarily forget about mine.
Living an imperfect but perfectly authentic life is so refreshing! To my girlfriends……THANK YOU. You are my SOUL SISTERS of SOLACE! Your Girlfriend Voices have comforted me more than you know!
How do you feel about struggling? What is your support system? I’d love to hear from you and your wise Girlfriend Voices.
From the heart,
Editors Note: I’d like to give credit where credit is due. There was a lovely caption with this photo on the blog: http://lovelarkenlovenico.tumblr.com/
Soul sisters. Because you see me clearly (and I can see you).Because you inspire me to love deeply. Because you celebrate my courage yet nurture my tender heart pieces. Because you are my memories. Because you always know what to say (and when to simply listen). Because you know my heart. Because I know yours.Because we are side by side, heart to heart, in this life journey.
Because I count my lucky stars for you every single day.