By: Danielle Sherman-Lazar
Wouldn’t it be easier if we could all remain truth tellers? If words could easily spew from our lips. If we could all be completely transparent.
We wouldn’t lie …
If people’s words back to us didn’t cut us sharply like swords. And it always shocks me how easily those words are said—without a second thought of how much hurt they can cause.
If we didn’t feel the glaring eyes of others constantly hovering over our backs like a hovercraft.
Those words, those looks, that judgment—gives us shame.
Yet, we sit there and judge each other in whispers and sometimes in screams.
But what if…
If we weren’t afraid. If we didn’t have shame.
If we didn’t have to hide any part of ourselves.
If we didn’t have to get to the age and maturity where we don’t care anymore.
Why is it that we are so hard on each other? We know how hard this life is. We have each driven on the bumpy, winding roads of life—different highways and intersections but they all have challenges. We have learned how to drive on these roads, from years of practice. But of course, there are accidents, traffic, and roadblocks along the way. The potholes can be deep– sometimes you can get stuck– get a flat tire, the engine blew— and while you are waiting for help you can find yourself waiting for hours, days, maybe even years thinking about your next move. Sometimes it’s hard to make that call to ask for help.
To the person that is stuck deep in the pothole trying to claw her/his way out, I see you.
I see you trying to get through the day.
I see you going through the motions.
I see you functioning on auto-pilot.
I’ve been there.
To that person, please speak your truth. I hope courage finds its way into your tank. You can make any car model stronger. It starts by making the call to get repairs.
Then you must take action—make sure you know how to deal with future potholes. This is the hard part. This is the dirty work. You have to work to make a change. Change doesn’t miraculously happen—this life isn’t that easy. There is no magic fix, no abracadabra and you get a sweet bunny out of a top hat.
And after some time, your car will be back on the road–running smoothly, oil changed, gassed-up and ready to cruise again. Yes, there will be bad days once again, but you can deal with roadblocks better when you know how to be your own mechanic.
You will accept the judgment because it’s inevitable and you will be more understanding of other car model’s track marks—a small dent in the hood, a nail in the tire, and a crack in the windshield. You have been there.
And like me, you will see others and understand. You will give them a nod instead of a whispering hover.
You will wear these dents with pride–they made you, YOU.
Dani Sherman-Lazar is an eating disorder advocate, Vice President of a transportation company, and a mother to two daughters. Follow her on her blog: Living a Full Life After ED