What if I were just me?

Driving down the mountain with the air conditioning blasting and smiling to myself thinking, "Sayonara Suckers!", I was happy I was leaving Aspen-Snowmass in time to watch the sunset.  For some reason a quote from Cheryl Strayed kept running through my thoughts, "What if I forgave myself?"

I had thought this weekend was going to be so many things, it started out amazingly enough, and I was sure it was just going to keep getting better.  I was finally taking somewhat of a vacation: a long weekend to one of Colorado's most famous mountain towns for a yoga festival, Wanderlust.  I had a vision of cooler days, life changing beautiful moments, and fresh mountain air.  And considering I was paying the equivalent of one month's rent for my hotel room, I imagined it was going to be fit for a queen.  When we build things up so much in our minds it's easy to be let down, so you know how this goes, nothing was as I had imagined it to be; from the know it all girl that I was paired up with, to the temperature, to the hotel room, to the plain and simple fact that looking around nothing looked like the pictures and accounts that I'd been following and liking for nearly a year now.  It was all gross. I couldn't imagine spending 3 more days doing the same thing and paying so much to do it!  I had to get out of there as soon as I could, so I checked out of the hotel, hauled my stuff back up the mountain to my car and loaded it up.  I grabbed a cool Diet Coke from the cooler, and was hitting the road once more!

Now back to the quote, of all the things I could be thinking at this freeing moment, why did I keep thinking "What if I forgave myself?"  In the moment, I couldn't decide, and a day later I haven't really pinned it all down, but here's what I think:  I'm exhausted trying to be something I'm not.  I'm tired of thinking about who I'm supposed to be, who others think I should be, always trying to become something else, and constantly analyzing the parts of my personality that I just can't shake off.  What if I just forgave myself for not being the best? For not living up to everything that I want to be?  What if I just let go of who I'm supposed to be and just learned to really love me?  As I am.

Now to be clear... this doesn't mean that I'm giving up on trying to lose weight or that I want to stop growing as a person.  But what if instead of comparing myself to others I just stopped?  What if I stopped trying to put myself in boxes?  Now when I say I have been comparing myself to others, I mean I have REALLY been comparing myself; and it's creating undue pressure.  I compare their temperaments to mine, I compare their career paths, I compare their passport stamps.  And, quite frankly it's making me miserable.  It's making me sign up to go places I can't afford to go, just to say I did something.  Now when I say I've been putting myself into boxes, I mean I have REALLY been putting myself into boxes.  I think if I practice yoga, I should suddenly be the most peaceful person and that I should automatically be a pro at eliminating waste and eating clean; and when my personality traits or lifestyle aren't meshing up with what I think I'm supposed to be then I get stressed.

What if I were just me? What if I'm a girl who does yoga but it doesn't define me? What if I wear mala beads and listen to a Christian podcast?  What if I like reading books more than I enjoy meeting new people?  What if what I really want is just to have a nicer apartment with a bigger kitchen rather than travel to hot and sweaty places?

Driving down the mountain could be one of two things: it could be me running away from the person I'm supposed to be becoming OR it could be me accepting who I am and what I'm not.  And the joy that I felt driving down the mountain makes me feel like it's a little more of the latter option.  I'm not a hippy that stands around talking about how maybe our paths cross in some other multiverse.  I'm not a person who likes to be hot and sweaty.  I'm not a person who likes to "rough it".  I'm not a person who likes to be forced to make conversation with strangers.

I do like being with myself.  I do like the mountains, especially the rivers.  I love books.  I love getting coffee first thing in the morning.  I like a good stretch, but I'm not looking to make my whole life yoga.  And I'm definitely not the kind of girl that takes off and misses out on my mama's birthday party.

I think for awhile I'm going to spend sometime just being me and shut out some of the outside influences for a little bit.  We'll see what happens; but if it feels like driving down a mountain and standing by a rushing river as the sunsets... I'm ok with that.