Come As You Are.

Did you catch last week’s post? I shared details about what my new event Made For This is all about. Check it out here if you haven’t yet!

Bodey is 4 ½ never sleeps through the night. Every night between 2 AM and 4 AM, I can expect to be woken up. Some nights he falls right back to sleep and others he's up for a while. Sometimes even when he falls back to sleep, I can't. I'm someone who needs at least 7 hours to feel functional. I love to get up early to write or work out. The quiet house and the smell of coffee are food for my soul. If I don't get enough sleep, those centering ways to start my day won't happen, and I feel off. It's a struggle to re-ground myself.

I show up to most of my early morning workouts tired. It's ultimately mindover matter. I always feel better when I'm finished even though getting there involves some serious self-talk. This summer I've decided to train for a race that's happening in August. Seven miles for my friend Janet's son Dean. He recently died needing a new heart, so we're gathering to support Janet and her family, to remember Dean and to feel his continued spirit as a community. I reluctantly agreed because I know how my fatigue affects my workouts. I'm competitive by nature, mostly with myself. And I know I won't be pulling off a PR run. But I've decided I will show I as I am intending to do my best.

This week I've been thinking about the trap of forcing constant positivity. Personal development abounds on social media, always asking us to do more, be more, and become better versions of ourselves. I love that stuff. I say similar things on my blog. Generally, I think it's a space to live and a mindset that helps us grow. But sometimes I wonder how one does all this goal setting and growing when we're also parenting special needs kids and working and grieving, feeling overwhelmed by the bills on the counter and the dishes in the sink.

While I value positive outlooks, I also value authenticity. We can't skip the steps towards healing or the comeback or acceptance of what we've got in front of us. Often the steps from where we are to where we hope to be necessitate an abundance of grit. It's okay to say it's tough. It's okay to say we are disappointed with life or with God or with a person. It's okay to be in the space of sadness. In those spaces, we don't need constant advice or five-step plans. We need to be as we are where we are.

Accepting the challenging work of surrender involves giving ourselves over to where we are at and to what is in front of us. I often feel the urge to skip to the place I want to be and avoid discomfort. But that is not how I grow, gain wisdom, and learn to accept things in my life which I cannot change.

I don't know if I will ever sleep through the night. Bodey's muscular dystrophy is not going anywhere. His needs will continue to be the constant hum in our lives. It's okay if some days I roll over and turn off the alarm. It's also okay to show up as I am with what I have to offer, tired eyes and all. My worth is not in my running pace, but in my showing up.

So be where you are today. Inhabit that space. Acknowledge that you are a work in progress and that you are doing your best.

And then, tomorrow wake up and try again.

I've been enjoying Emily P. Freeman's book and podcast called "The Next Right Thing". Her voice is soothing. Listening to her podcast often feels like a relaxing meditation. Emily's mantra is "creating space for your soul to breathe." So, if you need some space for your soul to breathe, check her out.

I'll be taking next week off for the Fourth of July. On July 7th Bridgett Piacenti, my lifelong friend and co-creator of Made For This, will be a guest on the blog sharing some of her thoughts and wisdom. You don't want to miss it!

Sunday Love to you,

Jessica