A Letter to a Friend

Dearest friend of mine,

Please listen to me.  You’re important.  You matter.  You’re here for a reason.

Unworthiness is a big, fat liar and it says things like “You’re not good enough.”, “You can’t do it.”, “You’ll embarrass yourself.”  Everybody else is smarter, prettier, stronger, braver, younger, MORE than you.

What will it take for you to surrender the shame?  What will it take to lay down the guilt?

You’re smart, talented and kind. You have people who love you with their whole hearts, but somehow you fear you’ll lose them.  They’ll find out you’ve been faking it.  It’s all smoke and mirrors.

“If you knew how scared I am.  If you knew how angry I am.  If you knew how out of control I am.  If you knew how ORDINARY I am.  If you knew . . . you’d be disappointed.”

You say things like “stupid me” and “I’m not good at that” and “if I looked like her” and “what will they say”.  You set the bar so high for yourself and lower it with kindness for everyone else.

Maybe, just maybe, on a good day you feel a little piece of you is okay. . . But just a tiny piece.  A piece not big enough to be called precious.

I just want to shake you and hug you and make you believe it’s not true!  How can you not be amazing?  How can your continuous love and kindness not count for anything?!  How can someone juggle 20 things brilliantly and do it again and again, day after day, and be a fake?  How are you unimportant when you make everyone in your life feel so important?  It’s not an illusion.  IT’S YOU!

My sweet friend, you’re not a fraud.  You’re just frightened like the rest of us.  Frightened by your imperfection; frightened no one will want you; frightened of what’s ahead; frightened of letting your guard down.

I don’t care if all the pieces of you are jagged.  I don’t care if you don’t feel brave.  I don’t care if you’re damaged and broken.  I love you.  I’m broken, too, and I want to let my guard down with you.  Please, can we do it together?

I’ll hold your hand when you’re hurting and you hold mine when I am.  We can make it through anything in our favorite pajamas, crying and rejoicing that we don’t have to uphold the image anymore.  We don’t have to bow to the call of perfection.  We can just be free to be loved, or not, just the way we are.

No pretending.

What a relief.

Life is messy some days and stunning some days, and we’ll breathe through all of it together. Let’s shave our legs, put on bold colors and walk barefoot in the moonlight.  It’s waiting to shine on us.

Love, love, love . . .

Your devoted friend


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