Growing Into Ourselves
This week has been a waltz through memory lane. Yesterday an old friend and I caught up on more than 20 years, sharing the stories that paved our separate circuitous paths. And as I type this, I’m waiting to meet another dear friend who has traveled through my life for just as long. And what has been very powerful for me, in these friendship-re-entries, is that I’m getting a chance to see and appreciate how my friends have grown into themselves.
I think it’s hard to look in the mirror and see the same thing.
At lunch today with a past-participant-turned-friend, we commented about how all the best things in life include some element of struggle. That while the fantasy of the easy-life sounds great, a great life doesn’t come easily. It takes something.
And the greatness I see in the people I’ve known more than half my life is proof. Life has dealt them blows that they didn’t anticipate along the way and they survived. And for it, they’re stronger. More confident. Clearer about who they are and the impact they want to have on the world. More at peace with themselves. Aware of their frailties and imperfections. They’re no longer trying to prove themselves as they’ve come to a place in life where they realize they have nothing to prove. They are powerful and beautiful.
It’s like they stepped out of a Dove commercial.
And what was reflected back was quite humbling. For they saw in me what I saw in them – the person I’ve grown into. I’m growing into.
And it brings me calm. For it reminds me, that I’ve come a long way and that all the bumps in the road are serving a purpose I may not always understand. And it also brings an awareness that there’s more growing to do. Always.
This journey is wrought with twists and turns and intrigue. But is there no better quest in life than to grown into the person we were meant to be? Maybe the trick is to simply keep reaching for the light.