Learning to be vulnerable should be the sub-title to my blog or to my book. These last months have forced me to be uncomfortably vulnerable. Though at this point I don’t think that being vulnerable is comfortable. No one likes it. We shy away from it and when we get too vulnerable, we certainly pull back from people because we don’t think anyone else can handle it.
We think they can’t handle it for many reasons. Maybe we aren’t comfortable with our baggage or we haven’t processed through it yet. It could be that it was too much for us or for people who saw us go through it. It may have pushed people away before or we know that it may cause others pain. Whatever the reason the reason is that we don’t like to be vulnerable, it keeps us from truly being ourselves around most people.
I knew I wanted to write this post, as I have been more vulnerable in the past few months than I have been in quite some time. This is due to finally feeling like I could be myself around some people. And guess what? I got closer to some people and further from others. I’m actually sitting here with tears pouring down my face. It’s a mixture of happy tears and deeply hurt, sad tears. And for the first time in a long time, I’m okay with it.
I was reading through my journal and something that I wrote at the end of last year and beginning of this year. I said that I wanted to love people more. Well guess what happens when you do that? You are forced to be more vulnerable. It means you get hurt but you also receive love back in very unexpected ways.
I have been praying for years that I will find strong, real female friends. I have always looked at the pictures of the groups of girls/women who seem to have each other’s backs. Sometimes it was real and sometimes it wasn’t, so I’ve learned. And I had to get burned a few times but guess what, I found some of the best and strongest women that I know. I know that they will do anything for me and I for them. It brings me so much joy just thinking about them. I pray for them often and thank the Lord that we are in each others lives. It doesn’t mean it’s easy but it’s real friendship. It’s true friendship, where I know that they will call me out when I am being dumb and be there when I need a hug or someone to sit with me. There is no back stabbing and cattiness. There is loyalty and vulnerability. We support each other and encourage each other. And it took work to get here.
I didn’t trust them overnight. It took time. It took me being vulnerable to see that they were going to continue to be there for me, truly be there for me, in spite of everything that I was doing to push them away. We had to make a choice to be vulnerable. And along the way I learned that there were some that I could not trust.
It’s this way with all relationships. We have to figure out who we can be vulnerable and real with and take the risk. We may get hurt and let down. But we won’t really know someone or truly know ourselves, if we keep putting up this facade like we do on social media. I’m guilty of it too. I use the filters and post the fun things that I am doing. No one wants to see the bad and ugly but we all go through it right? And we all need a little help to get through it. Life is not always perfect. Even when things are going well there is usually something going on or we are waiting for the other shoe to drop.
As much as I hate to admit it, being vulnerable is necessary for real relationship and growth. I’m for sure terrible at it but learning to be better at it and grateful for what I’ve learned so far in being vulnerable about my hurts, aches, pains, fears, and failures. I hope that we can all learn to be more vulnerable and loving to those who are vulnerable.