This Christmas I received the Best. Gift. Ever.
It was a gift I gave to myself.
And it was truly priceless.
As the time for visiting with family approached, I realized how much I had changed.
I was ready to let the real me out. Warts, inner radiance and all.
All the time.
I wasn’t worried about fitting in. Being good. Or being good enough (because, hey, judgment happens).
I didn’t feel less than. Or better than. Or like I was from the wrong side of tracks.
I felt “equal to”. Like there was a Playing Field, and we were all on it. Period.
I wasn’t concerned with being accepted or with whether anyone liked me or liked what I had been doing with my life recently.
I wasn’t going to stay up when I was tired and ready for bed.
Or stay with company when I needed to carve out a couple hours completely to myself.
I was willing to listen to my own needs and desires.
To take the time to get some things done on the laptop that were nagging at my attention and to throw myself into the new Kinect gaming system, playing volleyball, kicking some boo-tay at doubles tennis, and sucking at snowboarding.
In fact, I was completely skunked at snowboarding by both of my familial opponents. But I didn’t even care – competitive though I am.
I was into having fun. Being a part of the action. Not letting inhibitions keep me from something that I wanted to try – even if it was in a room full of family members who all had a front row seat viewing of my behind and who had held the acceptance I had so desperately sought in so many years previous.
I was free.
Free to be me. Free to participate. To lose at snowboarding many times over (well, every time) and yet simply be thrilled to be part of the action.
I was willing to jump in and connect and have some dang fun.
I was willing to look silly, to suck, to play, to laugh, to look awkward, to participate fully without fear, and to learn as I went along. All the while loving it and having a grand time.
I can use those qualities in all my endeavors.
They will take me far.
Hello, Rest of My Life.