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Wednesday, November 13, 2013

it's OK to not be OK


This very thought has been stirring in my heart the last few days. 
For alot of reasons, prompted by more than a few things.

I think we as women in general feel this pressure strongly. The pressure to be "okay" all the time. And not just "okay" but perfect. And even, fabulous. As a Christian woman, I feel that pressure sometimes even more acutely. If you're a Christian, perhaps you feel it too. 
Every woman that walks and breathes the air on this earth feels the pressure to be perfect. Physically, emotionally, mentally... you name it.

Through subliminal and not-so-subliminal messages that scream at us through all kinds of media all day every day, every woman is told we must be perfect to be loved. 
Physically, we must look perfect. Airburshed images of unrealistic ideals are the rude examples that are forced onto us, our little girls, our culture and the men in our lives - of how we must look in order to be acceptable, to be beautiful

To always be up, happy, peppy, and OK. To be emotionally sound. 
To not cry or be depressed or sad. 

As Christian women, we sometimes feel like it's not OK to not be OK. 
Like somehow it's wrong, it's not Godly, it's not Proverbs 31 wife material to be not OK.
Like we feel it's not OK to admit - 

I'm depressed.
I feel hopeless.
I am hurt.
I feel alone.
I don't know where the Lord is in this.
And even...
I feel angry. 

I wish we could just realize that it's OK to not be OK. That it's OK to admit - "Yes, I am a hot mess today. And maybe tomorrow too." And to really love each other through it. To realize that we (and our sisters and brothers around us) are all walking through heartaches others cannot see, and things others do not know. I often remind myself - I don't know what's going on behind closed doors in that person's life. I wish we would love first, instead of judge. 

I wish we could walk up to each other and say,


 "Hey! How are you?

And instead of just blurting out a fake,

"Great thanks!" 

We could actually be OK with hearing and saying,

"Honestly, today I am not OK." 

And be OK with that. 
I'm sick of the fake-ness all around me. The fake smiles and fake words. 
Let's be real, sisters. 

We are real women. Real girls. 

And we need to start owning that. Even if it makes us different from the world, even if we feel silly or not enough, or ugly or flawed. Because real life is not airbrushed. And if we're honest about it, sometimes real life isn't pretty at all.

Darling friend, I want you to know that you are real. And it's OK to be real. When you feel OK and when you don't. Because..... 


You are not a plastic Barbie doll. You are a real, flesh and blood woman.

You are not too much.

You are always enough.

No matter what you do. No matter what you don't do.

You are beautiful on the inside and the out, because God made you and He said it was good.

Your worth does not lie in how you look. So forget about that acne, sagging skin, frizzy hair, bags under your eyes, or if you feel "fat." You are precious. You are worth more than gold.
And your body does not determine that worth.

EVER.

You are more than your pant size.

You are more than your real hair color.

You are more than the wrinkles on your skin and the flaws you hate about your body when you look at yourself naked in the mirror before you take a shower. 

You are worth more than what men say about you. Even the dearest men in your life. 
Jesus calls you His. He is enough.

You are a diamond. 

You are oh so loved. You really are.

And you are real. Be real. Be you. Don't be fake. And if you're not OK? You can tell me. Cause sometimes, I'm not OK either. And that's alright.

Love you. 

E

12 comments:

  1. I love this Erin. I witnessed this yesterday, as a matter of fact. In between our Leader's council study and our children's teachers going over our lesson for the next day...we teachers talk, catch up, ask for prayer, etc. One of our teachers, a young mom of 4 boys under the age of 6, just said..."I need your prayers, I am a mess, I am so scattered, I can concentrate, can't sleep, etc, etc." The wonderful thing about that was that we could all relate, it allowed us to all open up about how we TRULY were feeling! We all walked away feeling better just knowing it was OK!! I had to remind myself and my daughter of this again later in the evening. She texted to say she was very upset. Why? Her roommate (who she has been having some issues with) walked in and showed her a dress she'd bought to wear for a sorority event in January. The very same dress my daughter bought back in October and had showed to her! We were both a little disappointed that a dress we spent hours searching for now had become her roommates way of getting under her skin. I really had to take a deep breath. It was OK to be angry. It is what we both choose to do with that anger that matters. Great post!!

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  2. After my break up last fall I had two of my closest girlfriends that would ask "How are you REALLY doing?" and I loved that because i felt like they really cared and really wanted me to let them help bear my burden and share my struggles with them. It meant the would to me!

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  3. I love this! I try so hard to be real with my answers to how are you doing, but it's sometimes like they're just asking it to ask, not because they care, but if one of my close friends or family who I trust asks, I will more than likely give them a true answer.

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  4. This is so good Erin! Often times we want to hide behind masks to cover up our insecurities and imperfections but the truth is we all struggle and we all have days when we're not doing "fine" like we tell others we are and that's okay. The more open we can be the more open others can also be with us about their own struggles.It's good to be vulnerable and real once in a while. It encourages others to do the same.

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  5. This is so great. It's something a lot of people need to here. Untile recently, I never realized that as Christian, it was OK to not be OK. Realizing this has made my relationship with God so much stronger!

    ~Ashley @ A Cute Angle
    http://acutelifestyle.blogspot.com

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  6. Precious words here Miss Erin. This past year has had so many challenges for my extended family and sometimes I have been not ok. Loved by Jesus, growing through the trials but sometimes not ok. And I agree - it is fine to show that human side of us. We shouldn't dwell there but sometimes working through the pain is a process that God walks us through. I have always tried to be sensitive to others who are hurting but am even more acutely aware after going through so much. Blessings.

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  7. Love this! Such an important topic that is often looked over! All too often it's easier to fake it and say we are fine when really we are breaking inside. For me, part of that comes from the desire to seem strong and not vulnerable. But if we truly were strong enough to deal with the struggles day to day we wouldn't need to Lord! So it's important to be real with others and real with ourselves! Love your blog and so encouraged by the topics you share <3

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  8. Love you girl. XOXO. <3 Thanks for this today.

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  9. Amen, sister!! This is SO powerful, and so needed. It's okay to not be okay! I think part of experiencing all of the joy that comes with opening out hearts to the Spirit, comes experiencing pain too. Since I've accepted the Lord, I've come to know a joy and a bliss that I didn't know was possible. That feels more real than I've ever felt. But you know what? I've also felt true brokenness. I've realized that I'm really broken, and need my Savior. It's okay to feel broken. We all feel it, and we need to start talking about it.

    Love you! Please excuse my blog post in a comment. :)

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  10. Thank you so much for this. I struggle with depression, the past few months have been rough and it is as a christian so hard to admit. Healing balm to this heart.

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sweet friends, share your heart.

"kind words are like honey...sweet..and healing.." -proverbs 16:24.

xo.

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