Sometime in the middle of the month I became a little fed-up of sending countless reminders to people to send in their pieces. By the 24th I’d missed two days, and I didn’t want to miss anymore, so I stopped mailing people and used the opportunity to publish pieces I’d written since June.
And suddenly, people started getting in touch to say their posts were almost ready. Lol. But then Ore emailed his, apologizing for being late, and without reading it (or checking the word count), I replied saying I felt he overshot the word count but I would publish today. He was sure he did 600 words and he said so. He was right, and I’m sorry.
I just read it now and it must have been God who made me pick this post for today. Dang!! Home truth after home truth, homie hit every note with this piece! Like, I’m so excited with it! Whoop! Feels like such a beautiful end to a beautiful series, and I couldn’t be any more chuffed!
I bought a pack of Post-It notes today.
Or maybe I didn’t, I’m not sure.
Okay, I didn’t.
Seems like I need to constantly remind myself to remember.
And also to never forget that my life is beautiful.
Because it is.
But how did I get here?
Several times this year I have felt deeply sorry for myself, wallowing in self-generated moroseness as I contemplated my apparent lack of achievements. I would waste hours drawing up comparisons between myself and others who seem to have gotten it together, whatever that means. In the end, there would be no lesson learned and no grand plan for a swift turnaround conceived. A miserable state of affairs, if I may say so myself.
I wasn’t doing myself any good and I knew it, but the habit had become far too ingrained for me to dispatch it with a swift kick. And so I carried on in this pathetic way, patching my doubt-ridden self-esteem inwardly with hollow motivational speeches delivered without any feeling to my equally unbelieving reflection in the mirror, and outwardly with smiles so superficial that could very well have been velcroed onto my face.
Until one day when, out of the greys (the skies never seemed blue then), I asked myself the one question I had never before thought to ask:
So I need a turnaround, but a turnaround from what exactly?
The answers, they tumbled out from the depths of my soul of their own accord:
1. From a family that treats me like I’m a godsend?
2. From a job I’m incredibly good at?
3. From the God who loves me unconditionally even though I have failed Him too many times to count?
And on I went with the list of positives, like a man who all his life had been convinced that he was lame but suddenly found that he could not just walk but fly.
Stacked up this way, my blessings dwarfed my mountain of supposed underachievement. You see, I had been wearing my misery-coloured shades for so long that all the good things in my life had become near-invisible and my measure of success was all the stuff I didn’t have, stuff I didn’t even need to be happy.
Bear with me while I struggle not to come off as preachy, please.
I’m truly sorry if you have no place for the God of the universe in your world, He makes all the difference. I’m as sure of this as I have no doubt that if I eat a meal of boiled beans and go to bed right afterwards, I will wake up with an upset stomach. That has never failed to happen, and God has never failed to come through for me. That is no small comfort.
So I am thankful for my faith in Him. That faith will guide me to everything good. At my own pace. In His time. I’m not in a hurry, lest my feet find paths they were not made to follow.
I am no longer afraid of the world’s critical examination of my life, no longer afraid that my shortcomings will be spotlighted and my carefully cultured thick skin will rupture as soon as the shower of prickly insults cleverly disguised as ‘good’ advice begins to rain down on me.
I have learned to count my blessings, and they have begun to grow.
And because I have been counting, I am becoming a blessing myself.
If that’s not an achievement, I don’t know what is.
The rest of the year will be fine. I look forward to more counting.
Boom! What did I tell you? Absolutely loved it!