You know what's not one of my brighter moments? The moment when I decided sitting outside barefoot in a short-sleeved shirt and pajama pants for over an hour and a half in 64 degrees and 17 mph winds was a good idea. You see, Swansboro doesn't exactly have spectacular (or even remotely good) cell phone reception for Sprint, so sitting on my driveway is just about the only way I can have a phone conversation with anyone when I'm home.
And well, today was a rough day, for more reasons than one, so I really needed a chat with a good friend, and Kyla came to the rescue! I can't really believe that she and I have become as close as we are in the past five months, except I can believe it because these have been some action-packed months for both of us and bringing people together is something God totally rocks at.
I'm so, so, so grateful for sweet, symbiotic friendships like the one I have with her. In the course of our big conversation, we went from her listening to me and giving me advice, to me listening to her and giving her advice, to both of us just talking about how thankful we are that we became friends. It was so beautiful. I have a problem with worrying that I'm not as good of a friend to the people I care about as they are to me, and after our talk earlier, I can safely say that that is not a concern with her.
Selfishly, and I think this goes back to me realizing the importance of having good girlfriends, I'm just grateful that I have these amazing women in my life whom I can look up to. Their wisdom, guidance, and friendship helps ease the ache of the pain I feel over not having a good relationship with Holly and Chelsea. Because I am so hard on myself, I feel sometimes like I don't do enough to deserve their time and devotion to being my friend, but tonight, Kyla really showed me the impact that I can have on my friends.
It always shocks me any time someone tells me I'm wise, and I mean shocks in a very humbling way. Here's the thing: 99.9% of the time, I have no idea what I'm doing. So when my friends mention how I always seem to know what they need to hear or things like that, it hits me like I've never heard that said about me before. But after talking to Kyla tonight, I realized that this is just part of the effect my life story has had on who I am as a person. I think everything I've dealt with in my life has served to make me a more compassionate friend and given me a wisdom that most 20-year-olds don't have due to simple lack of maturity.
Let's face it, I had to grow up a lot faster than most people do. I didn't get to really have a childhood, because I was either sick or felt like I had to be strong for my mom all the time. So I think I'm maybe slightly more aware of the larger picture than most people. I'm not trying to sound all high and mighty or whatnot, because I will be the first to tell you there is a LOT I don't have figured out, but I think that I am good at giving my friends advice when they need it because my life story has given me a different perspective.
This reminds me of this post I wrote back in July called "What If vs. What Is." If I had someone else's life, I probably wouldn't have the ability to connect with people that I do. This is why I'm grateful for every surgery, every health problem, every tear I cried, every ounce of despair or pain that I felt. Every bit of that has helped mold me into the person that I am right now, and I can finally say that I love who I am.
Everyone has something they don't like about themselves, or something they think isn't good enough. If you're reading this, I challenge you to focus on the good parts of you. I've learned that some of the things that I've absolutely hated about myself in the past are the things that my closest friends LOVE. Stop being so hard on yourself, stop focusing on your shortcomings or failures, and start noticing the ways that you make the lives of the people around you better. I guarantee that there is someone that sees you as a blessing. You may not realize it now, but it's true.
In my opinion, being yourself is the first step in bringing God the glory He deserves. Start looking at yourself the way God sees you, and the way that the people who love you see you. You are good enough. You are good enough because you are His. He made you you for a reason, so don't just accept it, embrace it.
This life is too short to not love yourself.