As a child, I got the award for biggest smile pretty much every year of school. My smile was a channel for joy, and it was also a cover up for any feeling that I had that was other than joy. My feelings, at least the challenging ones, were locked away and only I had the key. I actually remember being 4 years old walking through a super market thinking, “I always have myself, and as long other people think I’m happy, then everything is fine.” I’ve pondered and dissected why a 4 year old would be thinking such thoughts in the fruit and veg department, and the best conclusion I can come up with is that my soul was clearly here on a mission to learn vulnerability and how to allow others to see beyond the “happy” into my fully alive humanness.
In high school my best friend Carey commented on several occasions, “you never talk about your feelings or share when things are bothering you.” I probably answered with a smile. In college I finally began to open up. I was being hit hard with challenging emotions, and I started to express them with very close friends. But it wasn’t until I was 25 that I told my friend Malin a deep dark secret in a way that I never would have only one year before. I distinctly remember being proud of myself for sharing authentically and knowing that I had broken through something really big as I learned to be more honest and vulnerable with people, which if I admit is still to this day a learning curve.
But I was beginning find freedom from the need to appear perfect and constantly happy because I understood that sharing your full authentic self, even the heavy, weird and seemingly unlovable bits is what real intimacy and relating is. As my sister said the other day about a woman she’d had lunch with, “she’s making her life sound perfect, and my life’s not perfect, and I know her life is not perfect, so I’m not sure there’s a point to having lunch.”
Real intimacy and relating are 2 of my greatest passions in life. If we only share the happy parts, we only get to know half a person. Our power is in our ability to embrace and share the totality of our experience as we walk this unpredictable and wild path together.
I used to have a pretty successful natural health blog and my friend Anna commented, “I like your blog, but I feel like you could share more of yourself.” NO WAY JOSE!. I occasionally spoke of my personal life in the most shallow of ways, but mostly I stuck to subjects more in my comfort zone, like ten tips to deal with stress at Christmas. While I was learning to be more open and vulnerable with the people in my life, I wasn’t about to go public!
Eventually writing about natural health became a tedious chore and I began writing about my own experiences and vision of life. Yet sharing them publicly still brings up a fear in me.
But underneath this fear is a calling to once again push through my comfort zone. If I honestly stated the greatest desire of my heart, it is to write about my silliest spiritual visions, my rottingest rotten moments, and my sexiest sexual escapades and put them out into the world without giving a shit what anyone thinks. So today, I’m finally taking baby steps and doing that thing that wakes me up in the middle of the night whispering, and sometimes even punching me in the face and shouting in my ear, “you’ve written a million stories, get them out there for people to read!” I’m launching my blog for people to like, hate, judge, or not read or care. This is post #1 on shezzashakti.com
It feels edgy and in many ways I’d rather not, but even that is an epic part of my story. For me life is one gigantic adventure novel, filled with incredible challenges and beauty. Every circumstance has always automatically been converted into a meaningful chapter through the lens of my imagination. Behind this big smile of mine is a vision and by sharing it, I truly hope to inspire others and make a difference in my own unique way.
(And PS, if you happen to be someone who may be triggered by my stories, which may in moments be explicit, sexual or of a different dimension than yours, then please feel free to NOT READ them.)