Between the Shadow and the Light

When he was a baby, my youngest son, Franklin, started trying to coo and make noises with his voice. He was lying on the floor trying so hard to “talk” to his older brother, Ben, who was encouraging him and tickling him and talking to him. Franklin made this noise and scared himself so bad he started crying. I laughed as I picked him up to console him while Ben was concerned he had done something wrong. I told him that he hadn’t done anything wrong at all but that Franklin had just figured out how to make his voice work and that it startled him. I told Ben that now Franklin would never stop. And he hasn’t. But that’s another story altogether!

Sometimes in life, we come across rather hard and even traumatic events that find a way to steal our voice. No, not the actual sound that we hear when we speak. I mean the inner “you” you hear in your head . . . the part of you that tells you to stand up for yourself; the part of you that communicates who you are to someone else . . .   Sometimes, it’s one event. Sometimes, it’s more. Sometimes, it’s a trauma. Sometimes, it’s a tragedy. In my case, it was a very traumatic event that I had to walk through. And here’s a glimpse of one or two things I learned through it. 

There are things in this life that happen that seem almost impossible to form words around. In the midst of those happenings, there are times when you might find yourself sitting with someone who really, truly, deeply cares about you and your well-being. That person can ask you what’s wrong, what’s bothering. They want to help you and you know that on a cellular level. You can feel it with your very pores. But you have lost something as a result of that trauma, tragedy or event. An important piece of you. The ability and/or desire to use your voice. After all, if your voice . . . your inner you . . . couldn’t stop the tragedy or trauma from happening in the first place, what is the point of trying to explain what is going on now to them. I remember allowing myself to believe that I had no beauty and no worth and I really didn’t deserve to be happy and healthy. It makes what has happened to you easier to deal with and live with and survive when you can minimize who and what you are. And so, I came to those conclusions as a response to what had happened. And I believed those lies FOR YEARS.

Sometimes, in response to an event of that magnitude, people turn to drugs, or alcohol, or some other addiction. Sometimes, it can lead to someone putting on a little weight. And then a little more and then a little more. Until one morning you wake up and step on the scale and BOOM . . . it hits you. This number and its enormity. This is exactly how it happened for me. For a while, I really was okay with my weight gain. There was something very comforting in the thought that as I gained, I was less and less important . . . less and less credible . . . less and less attractive . . . less and less desirable . . . less and less meaningful . . . or at least that is how I saw myself. I thought I was doing a great job of just blending into the background of my life. Nothing ever to draw attention to ME.

What I have figured out in the last year has been nothing short of miraculous for me. I have learned that there is a huge difference between secrecy and privacy . . . how detrimental the first can be versus how liberating the latter one can be. I’ve learned that it’s okay to not be okay. You can talk about that with the people who care about you. You can share the most broken and shattered pieces of YOU with those you love and who love you back. They don’t have to try and “fix” you. Just listening and hearing you is enough. And it is okay. Let me say that one more time. IT. IS. OKAY. Because if we can’t share our vulnerabilities and insecurities and hurts and worries with those we love, we can’t truly celebrate the successes and triumphs and victories over some of those same things with them, can we?

While I have tried to instill in my children the absolute need to use their voice for good, to speak up for others and especially to advocate for themselves, I haven’t always been a good example of that. It’s been more of a “do as I say, not as I do” situation. I don’t advocate for myself. I haven’t asked for raises in my places of employment. I have always worked hard and hoped my employers would be fair and compensate me for what I bring to a team. I don’t stand up for myself – like, ever. My voice has always been tempered with kindness. In fact, it’s often more kindness than voice. BUT, I am learning.

Have you ever had something happen that in its wake left you completely unwilling or even unable to speak up for yourself? It can be one of a hundred things that can happen in life. And that’s the point, right? Because not everything that goes on in life is directly related to weight loss or gain. For me, I feel like I have hidden in a penumbra. You know, the part of the shadow that lives between the light and the dark. People readily see the light. And some are drawn to the dark. But that little tiny strip between the dark and the light is safe. No one looks there. Not at all. But for the first time, I am walking out of that shadow. I am emerging in this new and changing body that people are complimenting. And I am growing more and more comfortable with that by the day.

#loveyourjourney #youreworthit #bettermewithNewYouCBD #Endo30 #itsuptoyou

2 thoughts on “Between the Shadow and the Light

  1. Only that which we keep in secret has the ability to harm and deceive us. Sadly we are the ones that are deceived most by what we hide. I’m so proud of Lacy as she is “coming out“! Not in the way it is used in our current vernacular but coming out of the shadows. Just last night I became aware of my “sugar binge eating“ as a compensation for nervousness which is really worry in another form. This blog is helping me to become more aware of my own mechanisms that try to keep me in the shadows. Thank you Lacy keep up the good work!


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