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Personal Growth

I wrote this one evening after a grueling day, in a rough month of an eye opening year. It's about the pain of the reckoning, the price for true growth. I have debated sharing it ever since I wrote it because it is so personal. However, I think it will resonate with so many people. So, here goes...I hope it helps you feel less alone and keep going to get out of your cocoon again and again.

So, this growth thing, yes it’s a thing. I always think it sounds so glamorous like I am growing and going to blossom. I mean I even named my business Blossom because I think it sounds “pretty.” We all like to talk about growth along with the other word, transformation with such loftiness because there are moments of beauty. I think of Bugs Life when the praying mantis magician is waving a wand over a Chinese take-out box and saying “Transformation, Transformation, Transformation.” The queen ant had just gone in, and then after the magic wand waving under a full-moon, a beautiful moth emerges mesmerizing everyone with the “transformation.”

Here’s the thing, I wish that I could just go into a box, someone wave a wand over it and I emerge a gorgeous butterfly ready to be seen by the world, adored by many and belong on the “blossoms” of the garden. However, I know that in that box, it is more like a battle field. It’s dark, empty feeling, lonely, challenging and downright exhausting. I know even more that while people may wave a wand over the box, true growth comes from within us. Others are just there to help us, encourage us and support us; but we have to do the hard part. We are the ones with the stretch marks, battle scars and brokenness. To grow takes vulnerability, and we have to crack that hard shell that we have clung so tightly to for protection and let ourselves be vulnerable to even our harshest critic, ourself. I feel like inside that chrysalis, in the dark, when a caterpillar decides to go from the underside of a leaf, eating, growing and staying pretty much out of the lime light, to a butterfly, that something really intense must go on. I mean, sprouting wings out of your body can’t be exactly that easy. Maybe it is a bit like learning to accept all of you, not just the bright shiny parts. Or, maybe it is realizing that at the end of the day, no one can make you feel any other way than the way you choose, for worse or better. Or, maybe it's seeing the truth and owning your part in it.

Let’s face it, have you ever watched a butterfly emerge and hang there being vulnerable, waiting for its wings to dry, waiting to be sure it’s ready to fly, to try new food, to try to “hide” on top of the flowers? It is so beautiful, so fresh and so all alone. Think how much bigger it has become, bolder, more brilliant, more noticeable. I think of humans and how we stay hidden off the radar and then when we decide to “grow,” to transform and let ourselves be seen, it feels so frightening that we just wait there in the wings for a time. Some of us go on to spread our wings and fly, to feel the illuminating light on us and our new freedom. No one knows what we went through, the ugly phase, the insecurity, the messiness. Other humans only see the bright light, the flash of smile, the beauty. You know why that’s all they see? Because, they are busy projecting all their bright light on the new “transformed” human, giving away and discounting their ability to do the same thing. All caterpillars are made to grow wings and fly just like all humans are made to live in the light and shine bright. Some humans just don’t make it out of the cocoon because it is just too damn hard.

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