When I shared my intention of choosing vulnerability as a strength, it invited several converstations. One specifically stuck with me … “How?” How do you choose vulnerability as a strength?
I chose vulnerability as my strength because I couldn’t (or wouldn’t) deny it any longer. I have pushed it down my whole life, disavowing tears and emotions and the absolute fear of saying “I don’t know.” I don’t know what that is, who that is, how to do / say / pronounce that. etc times a million. And so I would smile and nod and be nice because I didn’t want to be the fool that didn’t know something (as if I could somehow have known ALL THE THINGS. Giant compassionate eyeroll at my younger self.)
I was afraid to speak my opinion because:
What if it was wrong?
What if it incited a debate/heated conversation?
What if I sounded dumb / ill-informed?
What if I actually have no idea what I’m talking about?
What if my truth is different from your truth?
What if my voice cracks?
What if I cry?
What if…. (ad nauseam)
That fear hasn’t totally washed away. It’s still just beneath the surface or, in the passenger seat. Present but not driving. And so I ask questions. I claim truthfully that I don’t know. I’m open (okay this is still hard sometimes) to feedback and advice and new perspectives.
It’s like I’m finally stepping out of these ill fitted clothes, and into something perfectly tailored for me. My authentic self. My full, vulnerable, brave, messy, vocal, question asking self. And damn, it feels like I’m clad in platinum and diamonds. It feels so good. It feels so me.