Emily is currently studying to get her masters in Anthropology at the University of Denver. She is learning to live out the mission behind Unpolished while leaning on faith to bring her strength.
Change brings about the biggest of fears. Stepping into a new situation, whatever that is, always leaves us with questions of worth.
I recently left a supportive friend group + family in Chicago and moved to Denver for graduate school. My expectations of “rad” adventures and lots of activity met with the reality of loneliness. Loneliness beyond just, I am hope watching “Stranger Things” on a Friday. Because, truly, I love being alone. My days in Chicago were filled with me walking from Avondale to Lincoln Park just observing. Nah, this is the kind of loneliness where you text friends and beg them to come so you can feel what a hug is like again. This loneliness regurgitated lies I’d believed for many years. Lies that good community and a growing faith had finally helped me to bury.
The question of being good enough has begun to haunt me again. As always, it manifests itself as a different Demogorgon (sticking with the Stranger Things theme) depending on the season of life I’m in. This time the yucky questions include: Am I good enough for this Masters program, and by default, the PhD I want? Am I good enough to step into leadership at a new church? Am I good enough to hike that mountain, to run that trail, and climb that rock? Am I good (read: beautiful) enough to be loved in the way I desire?
You see, when I left Chicago I was loved more deeply than I knew I could be by none-family, and I was the most physically strong I’d ever been. I had gone a full four years without relapse into my eating disorder and I was rock climbing, and running, and dancing daily. And I was full of joy.
In Denver, my body proved weaker than expected (thanks lack o’ oxygen) and making friends harder than I remembered. So I started falling into old traps and old fears of being worth it.
But one day this week while I was doing my daily run/walk it hit me:
WHO THE HECK DEFINES GOOD ENOUGH???
Answer: My Abba, my Yahweh. He declares that his creation is GOOD. Period. I am repeating that to myself over and over and over and over. And #imnotsorry for being the ever growing and learning daughter I am.
With that in mind, I am making a promise to myself:
Instead of being sorry for not feeling enough and rather than feeling bitter that I am in a tough place for this season I choose to
Say thank you to Abba that though transitions are hard, he has divine timing.
Say thank you to Abba that the thoughts that bring me down are no more than twisted lies.
Say thank you to Abba for each hike I complete, each pull-up I do, each climb I send, each mile I run, each good meal I cook, or a relationship in this city I have.
Say thank you to Abba that I can reach out to Chicago friends for both laughter and the tough questions; continuing to learn and grow.
Say thank you to Abba for the BLESSING it is to live near the Rockies and to feel grounded in the majesty of one of God’s finest sculptures.
I have no doubt that I’ll be repeating these promises to myself day after day after day. Each day is a new day. Not simply because that’s a nice metaphor. Not even because the sun rises each day. But because each day we are truly wiped clean and allowed to be free in who we are.
So, I refuse to be sorry for not being perfect, because I am being molded each and every day by my Creator.