Ever since I watched the Brene Brown TED talk on vulnerability, I have been more aware of the times when I feel guarded and instances when I exert control. The essence of her talk is that one must be vulnerable in order to feel the full measure of emotions such as joy and love.
I have raised five teenagers. There are three more to go. Lately, the experience has been riddled with sadness, worry and frankly not a lot of joy.
Raising my first born, I held onto the image of perfection. After all, I was raised on Leave it to Beaver, The Brady Bunch and the antics of the Huxtable family. As a first time parent I learned so much about myself. And even though decades have past since my son was a teenager, I continue to discover new things about myself through my role as a parent. Perhaps at times I cling to the notion of perfectionism.
Today during lunch I called a friend who I have not seen for a long time. She is wholly accepting of me. She knows more about me and the inner workings of my quirky brain than any other person. I can sit on her couch and be totally transparent, without fear. There is mutual trust. I daresay that I have not encountered this often in my life. In her presence I allow myself to be vulnerable.
Struggles with raising teenagers in this era, often cloud my vision of who I am. Preferably, I would like to be a fully joyful parent, free of strife and anxiety; at least some of the time. I look forward to seeing her tomorrow. It is sure that together we will laugh, cry and dream in a space of time where I can be accepting of who I am and make no apologies. Totally vulnerable. Free.