Years ago, I titled this ‘blog’-this space for me to write and get things out-‘INSIDE OUT‘ because, at the time, I realized just how much I want to live in such a way that my insides-feelings, emotions, perspectives, mistakes, failures, shortcomings, joys-could all be visible on the outside. I realized how tired I was of hiding, of other people hiding, of people putting on faces, of me living into false selves in order to protect and keep in tact an image (let’s face it-we can never fully escape this). So I began to write and share and try and live into this space of having nothing to hide.
Here we are, years later, and I’ve dubbed this year-2016-as my year of being naked. Because I need to reframe what that means. Because I’ve lost site of that agreement I made to myself a long time ago. Because there is so much chatter and noise and misunderstanding in the world. Because I’m tired, once again, of living in to spaces and places of false worlds and too many layers of self doubt and insecurity and too much people pleasing. Because I want to strip myself of the narratives that I’ve lived into that aren’t helpful. I want to take off all that I’ve been taught or told myself I SHOULD be or OUGHT to do.
I don’t like those words. SHOULD and OUGHT. At my place where I spend most of my daylight hours, we have a rule: “No (insert cuss here) shoulds.” In the class I’m taking through church we talk about catching ourselves in the ‘oughts’ and ‘shoulds’. Those words create expectations that aren’t helpful. Who told you that you should do this or that? That you ought to be a size negative or that you ought to read more? Who told you that?
In this exploration of what it means to be naked, I have realized that I have suppressed a particular emotion and it’s causing me, more often that not, to implode (or explode, on occasion). That emotion: anger. I have so much to say about anger. And I’ll get there. I need to release all these thoughts at a semi-healthy pace or I’ll risk sitting here too long and saying too much and overwhelming myself or others who might be listening.
So I’ll start by saying, in my kairos moments-those moments in which I overreact or want to explode or repeat a patterned behavior or end up losing it-I have found that the best way for me to process, to express, to work through, is to write. For too long I have left the pages of journals too sparse. So, here we begin. again. and again. and again.
Here I begin, again, the process of becoming naked.