I Celebrate Me

Happy Single Awareness Day

One day sure to make a person notice how alone he/she really is comes on the 14th of February. While it is a holiday that is wrapped in commercialism, it is hard not to feel slighted as people celebrate their love.  Even young children celebrate with sugar filled parties and cards. Phil and I never did a whole lot.  We exchanged cards with hand written notes because we simply did not have money for most of our marriage.  It wasn’t until 2011 that he even tried to send me flowers.  He did try that year and the flower company in CO delayed for four days assuming that since he was in Afghanistan that he couldn’t do anything.  I cancelled the order.  Ouch, ouch, ouch.

Feeling alone isn’t what this is about however.  Yes, I hope there is a Chapter two and that I know another great love story in my life, but at this point, I am not even dating.  I am going to celebrate me on the fourteenth.  YES, ME!  For many years, I was afraid of my own shadow and I lived in the mistaken belief that my value was limited next to others.  It took the hardest loss of the one person who my life revolved around and who I loved with all I was to wake me up.  I am worth it. 

While I still shake in fear and self-doubt, I am emerging from the shadows and I know that with someone or not, I am worth it.  You see, I have faith that blazes and that faith is compelling my decisions and my strength.  I know that I am not broken—just a little bent.  As I grow myself with school, living on the east coast, in work, standing totally independently out of necessity, personally, and learning to trust myself is all part of the linear progression to the new me.  Yes, I am kicking and scratching and wishing that I was not here because I like being a part of a team and having a safe haven to come home to.

 I am not an options kind of girl, thus I do feel a sense of total aloneness.  My children are grown a flung throughout the world.  They are the testimony of the faith and the home they were raised in, but my harbor has got to start with me.  I have to look in the mirror and like what I see.  I don’t always. 

I celebrate, however, my growth as a person since April of 2011.  I have gone places, lived in Europe, and done things I never thought I could do.  I have learned to problem solve when the stakes are high.  I have learned that I can speak in front of thousands even though I am quite shy. I wanted to make a difference for having lived;  I have learned that I can influence a small modicum of change through walking my journey publicly.  It is humbling on every front, but every skill and talent I was given are being utilized at this very moment.  I am not the best at any of them—running, writing, and teaching, but my story does compel people to listen which gives me an effective platform for my faith.

I celebrate my health and my endurance not only because I have run 80 marathons, but because my body can be battered on every front and withstand the storms both seen and unseen.   I celebrate my heart which is soft, transparent, and beating strong even though it was shattered into a million pieces almost three years ago.  My heart has changed because I have changed.  I celebrate that I am a better person than I was.  I see the value of friendships and transparency.  I see people’s pain and I make time for them now.  I have learned because so many have loved me well on this journey.

I may be alone on this Single Awareness Day, but I celebrate Linda and the woman I am becoming.  I celebrate her faith, strengths, talents, and her flaws because the woman looking back in the mirror can finally say, “Sasha, run on.  You’re doing great.” Should I fall, and I will fall, I may lay prostate on the ground for a while, but I will get up, start with a few stumbling steps, and I will continue on with a sassy swish of my sparkly polka dotted skirt.

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