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big girl bed

Important Disclaimer: The following words were penned by a profoundly sleep-deprived but well-meaning member of the Parental Species :)

Brene Brown, an author and thinker I admire greatly, says that, "...vulnerability is the glue that holds relationships together. It's the magic sauce." This is a pretty strong statement, but I fully agree. It is when we stop pretending and polishing and let people know who we really are and what we're really struggling with that good relationships are formed and fortified. I've felt this firsthand, in my real life and on this blog. Going there, baring raw bits of myself, doing these things thoughtfully, has been scary and wonderful.

The glue? Yup.

The magic sauce? Indeed.

And yet. It's hard, isn't it? To be vulnerable, to be soft, to be cracked open, to admit that we are less than perfect, that we have flaws, that we struggle with things? Even if we are not intellectually interested in Perfection, we all do the dance. I know I do. Sometimes, when I am posting to Instagram, I have a thought: What am I trying to prove? That my life is perfect and whimsical with just the right amount of chaos? It's interesting. Worth further thought.

The bottom line is that I believe, and deeply, in the power of Vulnerability. I believe that being vulnerable (in the right way, with the right people) can be immensely liberating and self-actualizing. I believe that if we want to be happier in our lives and our relationships, we better learn to go there. We cannot wait for the perfect time. We cannot wait for someone to ask.

We must just do it.

I will go first, okay?

Yesterday, we moved our almost three-year-old Little Girl out of her crib. I ordered her the most perfect tiny bed, white and whimsical, and bought a small comforter in her favorite color of blue. We put the bed where the crib was, under the wonderful aqua crib Santa brought. She was over the moon excited about all of this. She even took a very successful nap in her crib yesterday afternoon.

But last night was a different story. Last night was not good. Last night was tough. (Why is it so hard for me to admit this?)

This morning I posted the following picture and words to Instagram:

stoopMoment: 7:23am on Thursday morning. Just spent a few minutes out front doing spelling words with Big Girl before her bus came. She just got on & I'm sitting here clutching my 3rd cup of coffee taking a breath. I didn't wake up to write because the little one was up practically all night. She "slept" in her big girl bed for the first time last night & I won't candy coat things (though I'm realizing that's sometimes my tendency): It did not go well. She cried and cried and got out of bed and left her room & Husband and I took turns with the stints of sleeplessness. Now we are shredded & have another day ahead. Hence the surplus of coffee. But here's the thing. As I sit here, typing these words, the sun is rising & the day is literally brightening & there are birds chirping hello. "it's okay," they say, more beautifully than I ever could. And it is. Onward, but oh my, Parenthood. You continue in your staunch efforts to humble me.

I will tell you something. It felt good to post this. It feels good to tell the truth. It feels good to be vulnerable. It feels good to breathe deeply and listen to wisdom of the birds. It feels good to be seen and heard and supported and understood. It feels good to hear a chorus of voices crooning the same thing: You are not alone.

And I am not.

None of us is.

But if we insist on pretending all is peachy all time, that we are leading perfect lives and that nothing at all is hard, if we refuse to share bits of our true selves and our true struggles, we will feel like we are. Alone.

Vulnerability as the glue, the secret sauce? Oh yes.

May I continue to remember this.

And may she pleasepleasepleaseprettyplease sleep tonight.

{Now I'm off to read by beautiful and wise friend Rachel's Tips for Moving to a Big Kid Bed while I await your comments and continue to caffeinate.}

{Oh - I will come right out and be vulnerable about this and ask... One of my goals of 2014 is to grow this blog, to reach more people. If you like this post or any of my other stuff, will you take a moment and share it? It would mean a lot. Thank you.}

Do you believe in the power of vulnerability? Is it easy or hard for you to be vulnerable? Do you agree that Parenthood is quite humbling? Are you willing to share something vulnerable here today? (I promise to respond to all comments on this one.)

ADR Friday Loves 01.17.14

10 Ways to Be Happier