On being ashamed
Somebody taught you that, you know?We don't come out into the world knowing how to feel that, how to be that. We have to learn to be ashamed.
We show up with a clean slate, a blank canvas to paint the beautiful, the fantastical, the ugly and the grotesque. Reason what you will, it's not because you were or weren't any sort of thing. It's not because you did or didn't do what was expected. It's not because you deserved to have it be that way. It's because it happened. Simply. And it did happen.
Someone...or some-many decided your right and wrong, your good and bad, your acceptable and unacceptable. It's not anyone's fault. It just came at a vulnerable time. It came when you depended on people to be there for you. It came at a time in your wee little life where you really did need someone in order to survive the day. Somebody had to care for you while you learned. Somebody had to be your role model. Somebody had to give you the blueprint for how it was going to go out there...how you'd fare on your own. And all too often, that somebody or some-many were frightened. They were frightened because of what it was like for them or because they just never tried and much was unknown...and unknown was dangerous.
You weren't frightened. You were ready and excited and curious and open to learning EVERYTHING. It was when part of that EVERYTHING became something that somebody or some-many didn't know.
They said, "Stop... Don't... That's wrong... That's bad... that's not acceptable".
and you heard, "Stop... Don't... You're wrong... You're bad... You're not acceptable".
It's easy to say, "don't listen" now, but, then, you needed them. You felt you needed to listen.
Your readiness, your excitement, your curiosity, your openness...all those raw parts of who you were trying on as you for the day were not acceptable.
And then you believed, "Who I am is not acceptable... I am ashamed".
Shame is beyond feeling. It's beyond doubting yourself. It's beyond getting embarrassed. It's beyond feeling guilty. It's a darkness, a wretched space where who you want to be, what you want to do and what you want to learn aren't allowed.
You must change. You must become. You must let that part of what you want for YOUR own life shrivel and die to fit what's asked or expected.
Shame shuts down a part of your heart. It locks the door and throws away the key to a space in your being that had no chance to become.
Shame distances you. It breaks a part of you off to float in the background, in the shadows, where you can't even see.
Shame could ruin you.
Until you see it hasn't.
Until you see it wasn't even your feeling, your thought, your rule or your opinion that had shame plant, root and grow. It wasn't yours to begin with.
So why not send it back?
Or drop it in the nearest dumpster...maybe wait around to watch it get picked up and crushed and taken away to those places where things go that no one wants or has time for or, most often never needed to begin with. Wave goodbye as you skip away.
You didn't need your shame. The you who was ready, excited, curious and open was pure and free and unadulteratedly magnificent. The you, then, was... The you, then IS... right behind that waste of shame you're holding on to.
Toss it. Don't litter. Make sure to dispose properly of your waste. We don't want anybody else getting your sticky shame stuck to their tennis shoes.
Tell someone or some-many all about how little you found a need for it. Thank them for caring, but you've got this now. There's no shame in being you.
It's a shame to be frightened. It's a shame to be lost and worried and to teach someone your ways because you just don't know any better. It's a shame to limit yourself with reasons that becoming who you are is not what this world needs.
Becoming who you are is exactly what this world needs - each and every person being uniquely herself and exploring every facet of who that possibly might be, at any given moment, any given day.
without the embarrassment. without the guilt. and especially, without the shame.
You are beautiful. Each and every thought, idea, desire, hope and dream you have is yours to have. They are yours to learn about. They are yours to share without a second wasted on worry.
Whatever way you want to dispose of the spaces you're ashamed, make THAT your NEXT adventure.
FOR YOU. Whoever you want that to be.