Embracing the Mess

be what we are

“You’re a mess!” 

“I know.”

I don’t remember the exact inflection. I’m pretty sure it was said with amusement and some disbelief at how obnoxious hilarious I can be. This is a fairly common reaction once people have spent enough time around me and I’m no longer paralyzed with anxiety in their presence.

Usually, when someone not related to me or in my innermost circle says “You’re a mess”, even with all the joy of having been entertained by my sparkling conversation skills, it sends me into an anxiety tailspin for days. I’m terrified, that in the midst of my wine blabbering buzz, I’ve said something offensive or made a fool of myself and I am that idiot who just kept going, oblivious to the eye rolls and “Ugh, somebody stop her!” sighs.

The truth is though, I am a mess. 

Anyone who has read this blog (or any other personal writings of mine) has probably said to themself “Whoah. She is a MESS!” with all the muttering, prayerful thanks that they aren’t quite as much of a mess as I am.

I know that’s what I would do.

Don’t go clutching your pearls with your “I never!”

Yes, you do. You look at people every day and say “Thank God that’s not me.”

Yes, it makes you an asshole. We can be assholes together.

I’m okay being the person you sometimes measure your worst self against to feel better on your bad days.

I’m learning to embrace my mess rather than try and hide it, because let’s be honest–there’s way too much to hide! Kidding! Mostly.

I try to be the best person I know how to be. I try to be a good wife, sister, daughter, aunt, friend. I do what I can to recognize and combat injustice in the world. My greatest joys are making people happy, helping them learn and grow, and supporting and learning from them as they travel their own path.

I may not be the best, or even a great, person, but I’m not a bad person.

I would never intentionally cause suffering to anyone or anything.

I might offend someone. I’ll probably hurt some feelings, and it’s a sure thing I’ll annoy people. I would never be deliberately offensive, annoying, or hurtful.

I can’t omit parts of who I am to please others. 

We all make mistakes.

We all screw up.

We all fail.

Even if our biggest, best life goal is to just be a good person and make it to the end of this wild and crazy adventure we call life causing as little harm as possible. There will always be collateral damage and unknown unknowns. We can’t help that. We can only forgive ourselves for our ignorance in the present situation and learn from our offenses.

It just means I’m accepting that I can’t always prevent upsetting someone or making them uncomfortable, I might say or do ignorant stuff. It’s not because I am ignorant, it’s just because I haven’t made those mistakes before.

I’m trusting those of you I may offend or annoy in the future to tell me when I’ve done so and hopefully allow me an opportunity to apologize and correct my behavior.

Yes, I am a mess, but I’m working on it.


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