Friday, July 29, 2016

My Brave Face

This summer I have officially proclaimed Fridays, No Makeup Day! It's true. I haven't worn makeup not one Friday in July, except for a little mascara and some lip gloss, because let's be honest. I am a girly girl, and some things are simply non-negotiable!

It's hot here where I live. I walk outside and all that effort simply goes to waste. So in a sense, I'm saving time and money by not wearing any makeup. At least that's my rational.

I won't lie. I've been blessed with good genetics when it comes to skin. However, it's taken me years to see that even though I've heard it all my life. So going without hasn't been that big of a deal for anyone else but me. In truth, I'm not sure anyone has noticed, but then no one is hardly in our office on Fridays. So maybe I'm not as brave as you may think.

Never-the-less, it's been a little liberating sleeping in just a tad bit longer on Friday mornings (all 1 - 2 minutes of it), knowing I could skip a step in my morning routine. There's been days when I've even felt slightly mischievous, like if caught, the makeup police might give me a warning or a slap on the wrist. 

It's all rather silly. I know. But it's made me think.

We all put on some kind of face. We want to show our best self, the one we want everyone else to believe about us. We hide the truth about our lives behind a pasted smile or a cheery greeting, when really we're a mess inside. We're not as put together as we'd like for everyone to believe.

So instead of baring our true face, the one we look at every morning in the mirror, the one full of pain, heartache, disappointment, shame, and regret, we cover it all up for fear of being exposed. We don't know what might come with such exposure. Rejection? Judgment? Blank stares? Therefore, we keep it all in.

This week I didn't just bare my true face - the one I see in the mirror every morning. I also bared the one I've been keeping under wraps - the truth about my pain. It was one of the scariest things I've ever done, and once I did it, I felt so exposed! There was nothing I could do except wait for the response, if any. I anticipated rejection, judgment, and blank stares. There's probably been some of all of that happening in the privacy of the homes of those who read my story. That's okay. It's the response of those who reached out that has made putting on my brave face worth it. I've had some powerfully life-giving conversations this week, and I feel a bit closer to those individuals than I did before.

I don't know what face you might be keeping under wraps, or how unpresentable you might think it is to reveal. Let me encourage you to put your brave face forward. Dig deep down to that place which longs to be known. It's inside of each of us. We all want that - to be truly known, pain and all. It's gonna take some chutzpah (audacity)! But I believe it's in you. 

More than that, I believe you are worthy of being truly known. Yes, you with all your flaws, insecurities, and imperfections. Yet the face you put forth is the one people will come to know. I guess it all comes down to how tired you are of covering it up. 

I've learned it takes more effort to hide the truth, when just an ounce of courage can bring it to light.

Here's my Friday brave face. That smile is the real deal. Playful. Grateful. Amazed.