What does it mean to show up for ourselves and for others; in the wonderful times, as well as in the times that are trying, difficult, sad, lonely, or terrifying. What does it take to show up in all of who we are, especially when we find ourselves in the last place, we ever thought we would be or would want to be?
How often do we avoid showing up? How often do we make excuses so we don’t have to? How often do we send a part of ourselves or a masked stranger to stand in for us?
I think, being human, we’ve probably done all these things. I know I have.
Showing up is hard
It takes courage. It takes a willingness to be exposed in a naked truth sort of way. Showing up is an act of rebellion. And oof! it’s such a vulnerable act.
I was a teen in the ’70s, and when I think about “showing up” and vulnerability, I often get this concrete, flash image of a young woman in my hometown who steaked through the throngs of high school students waiting to board the school busses at the end of the day. She shook things up. It was her way to say, “Hey, look, here I am. Wake up!” In this conservative, small, sleepy town, this was an open act of rebellion, and it sparked courage in others to look up and see what was happening all around them and call for change. It was a time when every graduating class for more than a decade had seen classmates shipped off to war. It was 1974, the year before the Vietnam War ended.
I thought she was brave and beautiful.
Though I’ve never streaked through crowds, I have learned to show up and learned to continue to practice showing up. It gets easier with time, but I don’t think it’s ever easy. Showing up requires us to rebel against the forces within and without that would keep us small, stilted, and suffocating in our lives. And, in showing up, what’s easy for one person can be extremely difficult for another. For some, walking into a crowded room of loved ones is more difficult than walking into a room of strangers; standing up for others pales in comparison to standing up for ourselves. We’d need to know the stories of others to understand the difference.
We are given this one life, here and now, to live, to BE. It is an active presence in the world. Yet, living doesn’t need to be loud, boisterous, or showy. We don’t need to streak. Some of the most significant people of true presence in the past century lived out of the limelight by choice. Mother Teresa comes to mind, as do Jane Goodall and Mary Oliver. They all showed up, each in their own way, and by showing up, they’ve made the world a better place. I am sure you can think of many others.
What’s your way? How are you called to show up?
I invite you to SoulTreat 2021 and hope you’ll join me on Day 1 for The Art of Showing Up. It’s my offering to you in support of finding yourself again or in deepening your inner knowing of who you are and who you came here to be. It’s a welcome and a celebration of all that brought you to the place you inhabit here, right now. It’s a call into your Compassionate Conversation ™ for your Courageous Life forward.
Join Us: https://wusoultreat.com/
For more information and to connect with Jo Ann, please visit her website: www.prismholistic.com
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