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Why not be big, loud, and bold? Why not draw attention? Why not scream at the top of my lungs or burst into tears in the middle of a meeting? Why am I so concerned about being so careful? Why do I want to tread so lightly and leave so little trace of myself behind? Why am I so ashamed every time I let loose the hold I have on myself, care a little less of what others think of me, have a little more fun, and let more of me show?

I hate myself for letting my feelings hang out all over the place. I hate myself for saying the thing that is true to me in the moment I say it. I hate myself for being messy, for making even a tiny bit of a “scene,” and for leaving a mark that I’m afraid will linger behind me.

I am a human being. Why am I trying so hard to be a ghost?

I hate being invisible, so why do I feel so much shame whenever I am seen?

The truth is, I want to control how I am seen. I am terrified of being judged. I am scared of what others might think of me. When I let loose the control, when I worry less about how I’ll be perceived and just am me, I leave so much in the open. I leave so much open. I make myself vulnerable. And it truly does feel like I might be annihilated.

I have been ashamed of these posts recently. Ashamed of the person I am who is posting them. Ashamed of how many feelings I have and how baldly I have been sharing them. “It’s too much,” has whispered through my head often the past couple weeks. It almost makes me want to go back into hiding. Almost.

I care a lot about what other people think of me. I care more about what I think of me. I don’t want to hate this person I am anymore. I don’t want to be ashamed of her. I don’t want to shush her or scold her or make her smaller anymore.

I am big, and I am loud, and I am messy. I have a lot of feelings and I will let them show. I will take up space. I will make an impression. I will live my process out loud. And, I won’t hate myself for it. I won’t be ashamed of it. Someday.