Having trouble picturing myself thus I remembered a photo I’d come across again recently of myself when a baby in full glorious 60’s saturated slide colour. My uncle gave it to me. It is strange to see myself that age in close up, real life living colour compared to the mostly small black and whites I have of myself when young. As I thought about myself in this photo in light of this question tears came to my eyes.
I went from an excited, curious, sparkling, trusting and engaging little person to a withdrawn, sulky, sad and lonely child who thought so little of herself but still felt deeply for others. The shy, self abasing, self conscious teenager who had absolutely no idea of the beauty and gifts she held to the young woman who, despite working hard to overcome her shyness and becoming very successful at putting on all the required social and physical masks to survive in the world, never felt quite “good-enough”, evidenced by ending up in unfulfilling and even unhealthy, co-dependent relationships.
From the young (and sometime single) Mum who sacrificed everything of herself for her children so they would never have to feel the way she did. The Mum who also gave tirelessly of herself outside the home to help others without learning to give the same to herself first to the worn out, tired, sick and often disabled middle-aged woman who finally gets glimpses that she is so awesome just as she is, knows she is deserving of joy in abundance and realises, at long last, that she has the power to generate that joy for herself, right now in every moment!
The irony and the lesson here for me is that at my most broken I am also my most whole.