“Why don’t you care?
“Everything!” He said sounding exasperated, “you don’t seem to have a care in the world”
“Well…” she said, “I am quite deliberate about casting my cares away”
This wasn’t the first time she was receiving this kind of reaction. However, it was only in recent weeks that she had started to not mind it. She had, in a way started to understand it. To accept it.
Two months earlier something had happened that had rocked her world, and not in a good way. Like one of her friends put it, it felt like the carpet had been pulled from under her. The floor had caved in and she was left in free fall for days. Weeks.
“I’ve learnt,” she started, “I’m learning to accept imperfections. Of late, I have been faced with what I thought was the worst version of me and it nearly broke me.”
She paused to clear her throat. Even though some time had passed, she still got a little emotional just thinking about it.
“Listen, you can’t control everything. Worrying is assuming that you can and fearing that you shall somehow fail. Usually it is after failing so badly and finding that you are still breathing that we usually learn to release these things. It may seem silly and maybe it’s hard for us to take it seriously because it was popularized by a meme; however I find ‘but did you die?’ to be a very good question.”
She felt some relief as the frown lines on his face started to disappear. She had been where he was and definitely understood where he was coming from. She was grateful that she was learning to embrace imperfection, especially with herself. She had been the text book good girl. She was always working hard to be on the right side of everything. She wasn’t very successful at it because there were situations where by virtue of who she was as a human being, she was on the wrong side of things. She had spent many years being afraid, embarrassed and letting it all stress her out.
Over time that was the definition of her relationship with God. Acceptance. God drew her out of her shells, which were plenty and constantly encouraged her to celebrate herself. It had been a journey. Sometimes she forgot how far she’d come. Most recently in the midst of the turmoil she had been experiencing, she realized that she had become more comfortable with being imperfect and being known to be so. It’s not something she felt the need to hide. Yes, some days her vanish was chipped, her haircut was bad, her jeans didn’t fit well, she mispronounced words, she wasn’t called back for her dream job, she left dirty dishes in the sink, she was self-righteous, she wasn’t there for her friends, she told lies, she procrastinated, she had a past and she was broke. So what?
“But how do you do it?” He asked, she could hear the suppressed plea in his voice.
“Surrender,” she smiled, ” Look to God every day. Remind yourself of His promises. Lean into Him. Tell Him your fears. Tell Him when you are embarrassed. When you are worried, when you are sad, when you are disappointed, when you are angry. Get naked before him.” They both laughed at the last one.
“Seriously though” she said, “Listen to Him and choose to believe Him. If He says you’re the shit! Believe it! If He says you so dope, walk like you so dope. I am extra about believing God because many days it’s the deciding factor between tears and laughter. Remind yourself of His goodness and His faithfulness.”
Often times we do not realise what is happening to us as it is happening. Very few people can tell you with much confidence that they noticed themselves getting bitter or stronger. Most of us only realise when we are at the end. Being the type of person who was extremely self-aware and who also wouldn’t stop bugging God about everything, she was learning to live more in the present. She was learning to confront what was happening to her and in her instead of ignoring or running away like she had always done.
Nevertheless, she felt like her biggest victory was learning to celebrate herself, to be comfortable with her imperfections. Not just because she found people who accepted them, in fact even when she encountered people who rejected her based on said imperfections, she was learning to be okay with that.