I have done EVERY THING IN THE WORLD, not to write this post. I think because the more it becomes real…the more it becomes real. These feelings have been sitting on top of my chest for the past days like a prison sentence, or even worse a hospital sentence.
Crazy girl sitting in the corner of a coffee shop viciously typing, crying, dancing, shaking, and on this day wearing a face mask. I have to come to a public space so that there is some sort of structure to keep me here, on the ground. To keep me focused. So I don’t fly off. So I can GO IN…but not TOO DEEP, not get STUCK.
I cry now because I don’t want to cry later. I want to purge these tears while I have all of my hair, whole in this being. The tears, mourning the last piece of me that makes me a “pretty girl”. I have been preparing for The Day. I knew The Day would come, will come, IS HERE. They fall down like toy soldiers, at first one by one, then five at a time, and then fists full. They stand their ground. They are holding on. Each gut wrenching time I run my hand through my hair, reminds me of the roller coaster I am on and can’t get off. I keep saying…”when the time comes”. Kind of like everything on this journey; I’ll cross that bridge when I get there. UUUHHGGGG, I’m so F*CKING DONE WITH BRIDGES!
I want to set HER up for success, so SHE can be strong on that day. I want to cry NOW, so there is no grief attached to that experience for her. Grief and sadness are emotions, not to be anchored to experience. Let them move through, as I move through the removal of what is “me”; what is left of “normal”. Maybe then, the flood gates won’t be triggered by the loss of what I think qualifies me as “beautiful”. On that day, I want HER to CELEBRATE. To elevate THE GIRL who knows THAT STATEMENT IS NOT TRUE.
I. Am. So. Vulnerable.
I let go of the safety vest. I SEE HER IN THE MIRROR. Fully for who she is.
I received the most beautiful compliment the other day. A soul compliment. He said I was “crazy beautiful”. The kind of beautiful you can’t fake with paint. He didn’t tell me my body was beautiful or my face was beautiful or my hair was beautiful. He told me my SOUL was beautiful. It could have been flattery, but it felt like truth.
The Gem…VULNERABILITY. Allowing myself to be vulnerable, slowly, with ease, with balance, with grace; not flinging myself on to the fire and wondering why I burn every time. Instead, walking gently, intentionally over the coals, so as not to callus over in a harsh manner or shield completely. I am learning to be vulnerable for myself, and not for anyone else. To develop a trust in myself. To see that my hands are big enough. My hands are big enough to soothe me, my hands are big enough to move the waters, my hands are big enough to row the boat. My hands are BIG! My hands cradle my soul. My hands sing the lullaby, my hands write the song.
So, I cry in the comfort of MY OWN moment, grieving the last of what “normal” was. And I smile at the girl in the mirror, knowing what “beauty” will be. I cry now so that these tears can be MINE. And no one can take them away from me, because they are too scared of themselves. These tears are my own, they are not for pity, they are not for show. These tears are sacred. They are the waters that are teaching me how to stand and how to grow. They are the rivers guiding me towards the woman I AM.
I release you.
I have spent years on the search for what it means to be FEMALE, for what it means to THRIVE, for what it means to be ALIVE. This path has lead me all over the world, drawn to women and their children, to communities, to SPIRIT, and ultimately BACK to MYSELF. Here I will share my most recent adventure, navigating a diagnosis of triple positive BREAST CANCER and each step of the way I figure out how to be a little more ME. I am Catherine-Ayer Gresham a 30 year old woman