"The authentic self is the soul made visible." - Sarah Ban Breathnach
I'm not for resolutions, I'm for goals. When it comes to the whole idea of coming up with a "word" that is supposed to be your goal or focus for a year, it has always seemed odd to me. One word? Just one? What's the point? After one of the most recent Blessed Is She Twitter chats (#BISchat), I realized with stunning clarity my word for the year: authentic. I'm tired of blogging about pithy things that don't excite me. I'm tired of wasting my time and my days on things that don't capture my passion and heart or lead to change in the world. I'm tired of being a person who isn't real with the people closest to me. It is one thing to talk to parishioners at work in passing conversations and not go there - wherever there be may - but I don't want to do that with the people closest to me. My best friends. My family. My husband. Knock it off with the "I'm fine" and "life is all hearts and rainbows" when inside I'm screaming for more. It is time to be authentic, to be genuine - even if that means embracing vulnerability more than I'm used to. (Someone remind me of this when I've got a newborn and feel like life may never return to 'normal' but I'm afraid to admit that.) Naturally, I looked up the definition of authentic. What did I find? Beauty. 1. Real or genuine: not copied or false. 2. True and accurate. 3. Made to be or look just like an original. 4. Worthy of acceptance or belief as conforming to or based on fact. I want all of it. I don't want to be copied or false. I want to be real and genuine, honest and sincere. I want accuracy in who I am - the same daughter of God whether I'm mothering my daughter, loving my husband, or dealing with frustrations at work. Who am I at the core shouldn't change just because I'm in a different situation. I want to be an original because that's the way God made me - in His image and yet unlike anyone else. Why should I shy away from being who He made me to be? And that last definition. I kind of stopped reading after "worthy of acceptance". It all comes back to worthy, doesn't it? Worthy may very well be the word that my life is after - believing that truth myself and helping others believe it too. In order to know that I'm worthy, I have to be authentic. A fake, a copy, or less than the truth won't make me authentic and therefore won't make me worthy. I am worthy as I am, and anything less than that sells the beauty that God created within me short. If I'm going to write about cutting out the fluff when it comes to blogging, then 'authentic' makes perfect sense as my word for the year. Not every post will have some perfect ending or brilliant lesson learned. Some posts will just be posts in which I'm struggling, in which I'm diving in and wondering what this life is all about. I don't have all the answers. I don't have it all together. I'm not perfect. And that's authentic. Writing posts and attempting to be this person who is perfectly put together, prays consistently and has life all planned out isn't me, so this year I'm working on tearing down the façade and being authentic - not only on the blog but in the day to day stuff. I'm hoping to link up with Story of a Rose when I can because accountability is key. I've said it before and I'll say (well, write) it again: out with the old, in with the new, out with the fluff and in with authenticity.