It has long been said that hindsight is 20/20 and I have found that to be true. If we never look back over our life’s path to assess our progress we can not truly understand our personal journey and growth. This does not mean that we should live in the past or get bogged down my the weights we feel; it simply means that on occasion we need to appreciate how far we have come.
Throughout my life, whether from myself, other people or circumstances, my voice was often pushed down and quieted because it didn’t “fit” into what was going on around me; I didn’t see that I was losing a part of me. I simply thought that this was the way my life was supposed to be. I would look around and see the confident people with a sort of envy because they seemed to have themselves and everything working just right; little did I know that they had many of the same struggles as I did. I was trying so hard to figure out what others wanted from me that I forgot to search to see what I wanted. Once in a while, when I least expected it I would encounter someone who valued me just for me and I didn’t know how to handle it. Yeah, you could say I was a little confused, but weren’t we all?
As I look back through my life, I do see people who, either knowingly by effort or unknowingly by example, were encouraging me to find the inner strength to find my voice and make myself known; I was truly blessed more that I could have ever seen at the time. That is ok because maybe there lessons were for now anyway. There was the kindly grandmotherly figure that lived down the street from me that always had a cold class of milk, warm cookies and open arms when I just needed a hug. She touched me in ways I could never have expressed to her, but I think she knew. The list goes on from there and if I really took the time I could keep adding to it, but there is one in particular that has inspired me beyond all others. Just over 20 years ago another person on my list introduced me to my biggest cheerleader, strongest encourager and best friend. Of course I am talking about Andy; he has been there through the darkest hours and the brightest days! He is not blind to my faults and failures, he just chooses to accept them and me as one package. If often feels like he hears my voice before I do — and I like that.
The biggest battle with My Voice was realizing that I do in fact have one; that may sound odd, but I know of no other way to put it. I spent so many years being unhappy and wondering what was wrong that I was convinced that I had nothing to say and definitely nothing anyone wanted to hear. Through the various people in my life at various stages I have come to learn that not only do I have something so say, but that there is someone somewhere that not only wants to hear it, but needs to hear it. All I can do is live my life in the best way I know how, continue to learn and use my Voice. I am far from perfect, but I have a lot to share — not everyone wants to hear what my Voice says and I am ok with that — Finally. I know that just as I grow and develop my voice will do the same and I am thankful for that and look forward to where it takes me.
Oh, and just in case no one ever told you — You DO have a voice; you DO matter and what you think DOES count. It doesn’t have to line up exactly with me or anyone else. Take the time to listen you your voice and see what it has to say — you might just be surprised! 🙂
Let’s see what’s next…Thanks for reading!