Small Shaw woke me up early this morning. She was hungry, scared, and crying in her crib. I sat with her, comforted her, nursed her, and got her back into bed for some much needed sleep (for her) and alone time (for me).
After I got her back into bed, I read one of those “Facebook isn’t real life” posts on someone else’s blog. It was the kind of post that reminds us that we all curate our online profiles so that we present ourselves in the best light possible.
People are surprised sometimes by how introverted I am. Maybe I fool them with my outgoingness, but the truth is that I’m a textbook introvert. If I don’t have quiet time by myself on a regular basis, I lose perspective and get pretty down on myself. That happened this weekend.
Things are fine in my world. I’m fine. Life, on a whole, is great (really), but maybe it’s time I shot straight with you: Not every day is a big adventure around here.
Learning, growing, exploring, and sharing with others are all important to me. Having big adventures (like skiing in the Alps) is a blessing, but I truly believe that it’s not the “what” but the “how” that makes our days meaningful. Skiing the Alps with the wrong attitude is less exciting than taking a day trip to the next little town over from yours — if you explore that town with an eagerness to be contended by simple pleasures.
So while I believe in sharing the big adventures, I also know that it’s my attitude that determines whether any adventure, exploration, or plane Jane Sunday afternoon is great or terrible; fun or lousy. This weekend, I sucked at attitude. I sucked at embracing the same challenges and blessings and moments that I usually consider to be a really important part of my unique worldview — of who I am.
We’re our best selves when we live in our strengths, and yet I lost part of my Sunday to the ugly little black hole of my own weaknesses. I started out a little bit off my game and a little bit angry with someone I love, and the next thing I knew, I was nose-deep in the dumps.
We all live in or weaknesses sometimes. We’re less thoughtful than we want to be. We find less of ourselves to give to others than we wish we could. We break promises. We’re hurtful. We’re ungrateful. We wake up on the wrong side of the bed. We’re weak. And, in cases like mine, we’re such perfectionists that those moments of weakness feel awfully big.
I don’t believe in putting my dirty laundry out to dry on my Facebook page, or on sharing every thought (positive or negative) that crosses my mind. I’m just like the rest of the Internet; curating my online life to show me in my own best light.
Sometimes though, in between those life-is-so-good profile pictures and those things we cross of the lifetime bucket list, there are days when our weaknesses are more powerful than our strengths and we just sort of suck at being that curated version of ourselves that so many of us feel pressured to be.
I always want to do my best and be my best, but I failed at that yesterday. I’m glad it’s a new day today. Time to hide out, recharge, and try to refocus on the strengths instead of the weaknesses so that today doesn’t become another stormy day.