Sunday, October 21, 2012

Choose Whether to Wither or to Grow

What would happen if for just one day we were to let the world see how incredible we really are? Would others shrink from our radiance and withdraw into their own chrysalis of insecurity and fear? Or would they lean into our brilliance the way flowers reach for the sun? Would our magnificence radiate for all to see?
It makes me wonder what it is about this human pilgrimage that makes us believe that this heavy suit of flesh must dull our experience? We beat ourselves down until we are merely an empty shell. We are spiritual beings and we are made in the image of the divine. Shouldn't that in itself be cause to celebrate?
I, for one, am tired of playing small. I've lost patience with trying to position myself just so in order not to offend. 
The truth is I'm ready to offend. I want to shake things up and push up against the edges. That is, after all, how the caterpillar becomes a butterfly. It's not my job to make people comfortable and I no longer assume that responsibility. Like the caterpillar, if I stay in this small, safe place I will eventually wither and die. Just as the butterfly was always within the caterpillar, my brilliance is deep within me yearning to come forward and so is yours.
It took a woman much younger than I (who is wise beyond her few years) to remind me that I have two choices: to wither or to grow. I choose to grow because I realize that she and so many others are looking to me to be all that I can be so that they know that it is safe for them to be who they are destined to be. 
As I write this I wonder who in your life is watching you play small? Who is it who knows all that you are capable of becoming yet watches you choose to be less than you really are? I know in my life it's Z and many others.
I have no idea whether or not it is painful for the caterpillar to molt into a butterfly, but I do know that it has been a painful process for me to cast aside other's opinions of me and feel comfortable being who I am without apologies. I also know that an important stage of this transformative process requires the caterpillar to completely dissolve away. All of its old self must disappear before the new self can emerge. 
That is what I think holds so many of us back. We hold onto things that are dead or are in the process of dying when we must release them in order to grow. I have not metamorphosed yet, but I am growing and I am learning to be okay with letting go and letting the process happen. I now understand that I don't have to do anything. I just have to be. And in this being-ness I become... 

1 comment:

  1. Michelle, well said. This is especially true of women. It seems that we often cower because we would much rather be liked than be respected for who we truly are. Keep writing my friend!