What happened to us?
Today I had someone tell me that when they first met me they “thought I was going to be a total bitch.” Another chimed in “Yea, when I first met you I thought you were a know-it-all, I mean, who could be that pretty, and have it all together, and the great relationship...you are pretty easy to hate, actually.”
This caught me off guard. I suppose we all have the versions of ourselves that we are, and then the version of ourselves that we hope people see, and then what they actually see.
Picture this, me, in a corner crying my eyes out. I am so incredibly sensitive to the world around me, I hate confrontation and I have this urgent need for organization and to know what’s going to happen. Sometime between my Dad’s stroke and me promising forever to someone, I got incredibly worried. I wake up every morning, so unsure if I can get through another day of being brave, authentic and polite. I wonder if his is the day where I will quit it all, move to Costa Rica and serve people shots on the beach. Being yourself is damn near impossible in most moments. Yet, we come into contact with some many people on a daily basis, work, the gym, friends of friends...and we never just get right down to the reality of it all, right? We stand around sharing knowledge, ideas, insults about the latest person that sucks, or the latest song we hated. I tend to greet people with overzealous hugs and hellos and energy and excitement that most likely scares them a little. I do this because, it’s better than saying what I really want to say, which is
“Hi, I’m Keltie. I’m trying my absolute best, and I take great pride in the things I create. I’m not sure if I am doing a very good job, and I don’t think anyone likes me, I hate almost everything about myself, meeting new people makes me incredibly uncomfortable.”
I think if I started conversations like this, then maybe we would all get somewhere. Instead, the whole world is filled with people who scare us, people who judge us, people who mock us, and no one is ever really stopping to say, “Hey, I can really see that you are trying, and I’m trying too.”
This week is the wake of yet another horrific tragedy, I found myself crying, extra tears. For those families, and for our world. The world in which mass shootings happen, and a world where someone hurts so badly, that the only way they can see a way out of the hurt is to hurt others.
Look, I get it. We live in a pressure cooker. Who can get the highest grades? Most hits? Sell the most singles? Have the most expensive backpack made by the Olsen sisters? Who is the biggest star? The baddest star? The most “followed” star? It’s exhausting, really. I’m exhausted, and I know you are too. It’s almost impossible to be on the good side of everyone’s thoughts. It’s a miracle if everyone likes you. It’s a near miracle if I can get through the day without hearing something about someone who really likes me to my face, but actually sort of hates me.
Today, and most days, I want to run in a corner, cry and hide forever. I fear what the future holds. I’ve lost my sense of innocence, and trust that better days are ahead, because every time I turn around, something falls through, someone is dying, and something terrible is happening. I long for stability in a way I never have before. I’m scared.
Someone once told me that FEAR, is the only feeling that is real. I think that might be true. I’m always my best self when I have nothing to fear. But, how can we possibly have nothing to fear, when the movie theaters and school grounds have become battlefields? How can we live without fear when the world has become one judgmental monster instead of the compassionate community I know we are all longing for?
I’m making a vow tonight, and I hope you will too. I am vowing to help those I see struggling, to guide those I see who need guidance. To help those who have less than me and to love, without jealousy or anger, those who have more. To be impeccable with my word and use my words for positivity. To live without the fear of what’s next and instead embrace this magical journey. To share my story with grace and honesty, to open my eyes and heart to the differences between us. Finally, I vow to greet everyone with my best self, and do my best work, and give my best love without worrying what other think. Most importantly, I vow to work everyday to make life easier on others. To help, nurture, support anyone, no matter what I might think of them in our first meeting and hopefully, inspire others to do the same. I believe if we all just start being a hell of alot nicer to eachother, we might have a fighting chance at happiness and most importantly, peace.