Thursday, November 21, 2013

Dear Child

Dear Child,

Hey there. I know you may not be feeling at your best in this moment--this ordinary moment on a Thursday afternoon--so I wanted to write you a letter. Not because you've done anything wrong. Not because I'm worried. But simply because I can tell you what I see and these observations may give you some perspective.

I see you sitting at work.
I see your glances out the window.
I see your heart.
I see weariness.

But, I also see those green eyes.
I see life.
I see spirit.
And I see potential.

Do you?

Sometimes I'm not sure.

Sometimes I wonder if you've become lost and/or distracted somewhere in the mire of "college graduate, but not quite sure of direction" and "is this how twenty-six is supposed to look?" Or ever-more manipulating "not good enough" and "never will be." Powerful messages. Terrible lies. But oh-so tempting.

But, let me tell you something true.
Something undeniably real.

You're pretty great.

Yeah, I've liked you since...forever.

I think you are swell and fantastic and every adjective in between. And maybe today isn't your day. Maybe this Thursday afternoon will not go down in history as particularly inspiring or life-changing. But they can't all be that way. I think you'd grow tired if they did. This is just a day. Just an afternoon.

No need to analyze.
No need to criticize.
No need to make it into something it isn't.
And the same goes for you.

Today is what it is.
You may have felt your best.
Finished that list.
Said what you should have said.
Reacted as you may have wished.

But today was your balanced best. 
And I know it was your best because it's what happened.

There's not a golden bar set somewhere unreasonably high and every day that you miss it is another day down the tubes. No, your best is not a point. A destination. Your best is any day that you are alive and trying. Alive and being.

And today was your balanced best, because you showed up.
Good. Freaking. Job. Darnit.

Some days your "best" may be teaching fanciful lessons and helping students learn.
Some days your "best" may be embracing this new culture with openness and compassion.
Other days your "best" may be gulping chocolate milk for breakfast and just getting out the door.

Compassion, my dear. Please, reach for it. Lean into it. Feel it.
It's here when you are ready, but it will never be forced upon you if you aren't.