The thought of being vulnerable scares me. Whenever I feel vulnerable, I feel exposed. In fact, writing this blog is a new step. I'm being vulnerable on here, sharing feelings that I'm scared to tell anyone. Being vulnerable is a fear of mine because I know that standing defenseless gives people a chance to reject me, make fun of me, or even judge me. So, I try to not be vulnerable.
But I realized that healing comes through being vulnerable. It occurred to me that I was hurting myself more by hiding my feelings. The people who wear "their heart on their sleeve" are the bravest, most loving, and honest people out there. Yet, we do not want to do this: avoidance is easier.
Being brave could mean getting hurt by the people you love; being honest with people is like standing on a battlefield--unarmed.
Still, I admire people who find it easy to be this vulnerable. They know they could be rejected or scoffed at, but they still do it.
"They haven't gone through what I have," you might say. No, they haven't. People will probably never fully understand the pain you've experienced, but they've been through other pain, their pain.
Just think: they're probably just as scared of being vulnerable as you. But if you never let yourself be vulnerable, you will never grow.
Let's define being vulnerable. It does not mean that you are not expected to be a social butterfly and become friends with every person you meet or be expected to be someone you're not.
- Expressing the emotions you always try to hide.
- Letting people know that you have fears.
- "Being you" even if you know others might leave you
And . . . it's . . . hard . . .
It has taken me over a week to come up with an example of when I was vulnerable, but yesterday, when I was riding in the car with my mom and little sister, we started to talk about how we felt about our big brother Jake leaving for college. My mom started to cry because, well, Jake is such a crucial part of our family: each of us have a close relationship with him. Inside, I had been afraid of how much I should contact him while he's in college. I thought he would think of me as clingy. You see, when I was in sixth grade, a close friend decided I was clingy and then, she dismissed our relationship, after being friends for over two years. Because of this, the fear of being clingy with others now scared me, even though I now understand why I have a tendency to do this with people I'm close to. When I finally got the words out to my mom and sister, I cried, which I hate to do because it makes me feel even more vulnerable. However, by telling my mom how I felt, it set me free, and I felt like a burden had been lifted off my shoulders.
So, I challenge you to be vulnerable around the people you love. Eventually, it will get easier, but in the long run, it will be worth it. I'm going to be praying for you who read this that you are given the courage to be vulnerable with others. Please feel free to comment about what happens! God bless you!