Field-notes from Hiatus

by P. Braithwaite

(I dedicate this blog post to my FIRST EVER blogging class students, who have inspired and challenged me to show up in class, in life…and on this blog.)

There are a million reasons I haven’t been blogging: laziness, busyness, preoccupation with binge-watching Downton Abbey. The idea that once you fall out of a routine, the hardest thing is getting back. Or the fleeting thought that I can’t write a blog and a book at the same time (I can). Writer’s block? Blogger’s blog? Beyoncé?

The truth is…

…I’m scared of what people think of me.

Somewhere along the line, I stopped looking at myself with my own eyes. I stopped viewing my own stories as unique or beautiful. Someone told me I was tragic, and I believed them. I lost my inner sense of nuance when someone looked at me with pity, and I started to actually feel pathetic. I yielded to the power my insecurities…

And, of course, my writing suffered. My writing is always the first to suffer…

It is the challenge of a lifetime to see yourself through your own eyes — to shake off Instagram external filters and view your own reflection with UNCONDITIONAL love. It’s our the life’s work to stay rooted in our own ideas of who we are…to keep committed to the tapestries we’re spinning (EVEN when others don’t yet recognize the work). We have to believe in the tenor of our own voices…we have to stay anchored to the strength in our own mess.

It’s time to work my way back into union with my mess. I’ve been hiding…pretending it’s not there.

Wherever you are on your journey this afternoon, I wish you the ability to see yourself kindly (and clearly)…even if the world hasn’t learned to do the same.


Photo credit: Ryan Mcguire of Bells Design