I am spinning. I have been off and on since I experienced something very shaming earlier today. I am wondering about everything I have said, every interaction I have had, in the past 6 months, and trying to reconcile the ways in which I have been imperfect. I am searching for the truth in some feedback I received and trying to determine what belongs to me and what does not.

This is what I know:

I am imperfect. I do some things well, and other things not as well. I am trying. Always, I am trying. I am willing to learn, and willing to grow. I am deeply invested in my relationship with myself, and at the end of the day, it is this that is most important to me right now. I am a genuinely good person. I have a kind, loving, and generous heart. I do my best in any given moment. I am honest and open. I take up space. I have a voice and I use it to be heard. I advocate for my own wants and needs.

I am not going to be liked or appreciated by everyone in every situation.

I take up space. I have voice. I use it to be heard. Right now, the shame is making me want to shrink. It is making me wish that I was silent. It is saying, “You talk too much. You say too much. You should be smaller. You should be less seen. Less heard. You should not upset other people. You should be more careful. Be careful. Be careful.”

I’m not interested in being invisible anymore because it makes other people more comfortable for me to be so. I’m not interested in staying silent anymore because it makes it easier for others if I am.

Other people don’t have the right to define me. It is not something anyone gets to do, unless I let them. I don’t want to let them anymore.

Still, I continue to spin. I want to give back this shame. And, I am sitting here, right now, questioning who I am and how I express myself. I am feeling bad, wondering if I am bad.

For tonight, I have to let it go. Sleep, and hope all of this finds its rightful place.