My Great Performance.

I wish we didn’t feel the need to walk into a room and throw down our ace cards—cards like what we do, what we’ve accomplished, who we know, and so forth. I wish we could just walk into a room and feel connected because we’re human, because we’re walking miracles regardless of our jobs and accomplishments. That would be a good world.

-Donald Miller,

I posted this quote a few weeks ago on facebook. At the time it was something that was encouraging to me. Now, after reading more of Donald Miller’s book “Scary Close”, it brings discomfort into my life. The reason? I think that I use what I do to receive love from people.

When I initially got the book, I was excited to be reading about intimacy and ways to improve that part of my life. I knew that I struggled with intimacy but what I didn’t realize was how much of a hard outer shell I had created over the years. I went from having no boundaries and letting everyone in, to having such strict boundaries that it’s nearly impossible for anyone to see the whole package that is Kaitlyn.

Outwardly I project someone who is confident, wise, independent, and intelligent. And I have taken a ton of pride in that part of myself, to the point that I think if I don’t project that side then I’m not lovable. When thinking about that, I’m reminded of this 6 year old girl who just wants to feel validated and known, but fears it because that means people will see the mistakes she makes. It’s amazing to me that I started worrying about this stuff when I was 6, that I started experiencing shame then. And it’s very disheartening.

A way I perform is through my writing. It took me a long time to admit that to myself. In writing I control what I say and how much others see of me. I can share only the parts of myself that I think sound beautiful and creative. And I dislike how manipulative that makes me sound. It causes people to question me and what I write about. And I don’t think what I write about isn’t true…. I think I am being honest. But I also think that because encouragement is such a major affirmation for me that I have turned to my writing, made it “perfect” (when it’s really not), and made it into one of the only ways that I can receive love. Creating this false sense of intimacy for myself.

This is one reason why it takes me forever to get anything done… my perfectionism is one of my worst qualities. I have been combating it for years and often it seems I will never get past it. I fear people not liking what I do to the point that I often don’t finish.

I don’t have any magic words to make this all okay. Nor do I have a step by step process of what I need to go through. Life isn’t like that anyway. All I know is that this is a mess that I wasn’t expecting and I am intrigued to see what I learn about myself and my relationship with God in the process.