I’m only 9 days into the Be Your Own Beloved course and it has already been eye opening. The goal of the class is that we learn to see ourselves, truly see ourselves. I don’t think I fully understood what that would mean until I started looking back over the pictures I’ve taken so far. I am seeing some things about myself and about my life that I don’t think I realized before.
I took this photo on Day 7 when we were challenged to take a picture that captured us savoring a moment in our day
It had been raining in Charlotte for a few days and the sun finally came out. I was leaving work when I took this picture. What struck me as I look back on this picture is that, if not for the prompt, I would have just kept rushing to the car to get to my next meeting. Instead I slowed down to savor the feel of the sun on my face. My life is too busy and I move too fast from one thing to the next. I don’t stop long enough to really be present in the moments of my day. I think this is something I should try to change.
This picture has been the hardest so far for me to take (pardon the noise. I took it with my iPhone and I didn’t edit it)
We were to look at ourselves with eyes of love and attempt to capture that moment. SUPER hard for me because at the moment I’m having a hard time looking at all the gray in my hair. The women in my family all gray early. My grandmother had a full head of gray by the time she was in her 30’s. I’ve been graying for a long time but I have been covering it up, courtesy of my local beauty store’s stock of hair color. I have been attempting to be brave by letting the gray just grow out. But it has proven harder than I thought, so I’m caving and coloring it when I next wash my hair. And besides I look so utterly ordinary in this picture. Not sure how lovingly I gazed at myself but it was eye opening to see how hard it was for me to take this picture (after multiple attempts this was the best I could come up with).
My favorite picture and prompt so far was Day 5 when we had to capture a part of our body and tell a portion of our story. This was my capture
And these were the words I used to share a portion of my story:
These hands have held others both literally and figuratively as they have walked through dark times, bringing comfort during some of life’s most raw moments. It has been my privilege to hold space with others and be a safe place as they find their way through the dark. These hands have indeed held much
Taking this picture reminded me that I have been given a gift each time someone has trusted me with their story. Holding space for others in hard times is truly a privilege I do not take lightly.
This project has proven to be such a challenge. I think I’m on my way to seeing myself kinder but it will be interesting to see where I am when this is all over. How about you? How are you at looking at yourself with kindness? Would this be easy or hard for you?