As a child I was taught about unconditional love and forgiveness. I was taught to try and live with these values. But the truth is, the more I strived to live like this, the more I felt like a miserable failure. A failure at loving everyone. A failure at forgiving even myself.
If I took a snapshot of my days, it would start out waking up with an immense sense of remorse and regret for past “mistakes.” Then remorse and regret for not being able to forgive myself for these past mistakes…a vicious cycle. A cycle of crippling perfection. The pain of my past does ease with time, but it is always there. On top of my often times debilitating struggle with shame and guilt, my day is filled with numerous hurtful words and thoughts directed at people, some of which I claim to love dearly. Being unkind and ungrateful permeates my day more than I would like to admit. I struggle with self love. I struggle with forgiveness. I struggle with loving others regardless of their actions.
I am however human, and these are struggles that if everyone was honest with themselves, struggle with too. However, not everyone chooses to respond to struggles and hardships in the same way. With anything in life you can blame, make excuses, and wallow in self pity, or you can learn and grow from each experience, whether it be a good or bad one. I make a conscious decision every day to do the latter.
The most important and valuable lesson I have learned so far in this crazy journey we call life is that the more I strive for perfection, the more it is clear to me that I will never attain it. Coming to this realization has taught me empathy. It has taught me compassion. It has taught me that I have no reason to judge others when I, myself, am marred with imperfections. But above all, it has taught me that I need to put my faith in something much larger and much greater than myself, and I need to have faith that there are better days ahead.
So when the world seems like it’s crumbling around you. When everything seems dark, I pray that you hold onto hope.
Although you may not be able to see it now, your impact is unmeasurable and unfathomable. You are loved. you are worthy. And you are needed. On a hundred different days, in a thousand different ways, by a million different people.
So please stay,
You are needed.