We all have a story.
We all have parts of our lives that aren’t so pretty.
If we are honest with ourselves, we probably find it easier to filter out these not-so-pretty stories from our consciousness – maybe with a hope that we are simply better than that or more deserving of an alternate reality.
I know myself, I have tried to run from many parts of my not-so-pretty stories.
But what I have learned is that there is a mighty thread that runs through the ugly, that binds it into beauty.
That thread is named Grace.
Grace can be difficult to recognize in the moments of overwhelm and pain. It is often the hindsight that gifts us the ability to identify the threads of Grace. It becomes more clear, as the picture slowly unfolds into connective flow – how the things we may have once thought of as piercing deaths to our life or dreams, are actually the refining that was necessary to fulfil the fullness of our very being.
Pretty things can very easily be damaged or destroyed. But pretty things can also be created anew through hard-earned processes of time and refining.
I’ve had the pleasure of being part of the launch team for a new book called, “All the Pretty Things” by Edie Wadsworth. This is her first book – a memoir:
“It’s the story I never wanted to tell.
It’s the story I’ve been trying to run from for forty years and the story I’ve been skirting around for nearly three years as I wrote. The words in these pages are all raw and fresh and hard-fought. What I don’t want to write about is the thing that scares me the most.”
(from All the Pretty Things by Edie Wadsworth)
I really loved reading this book. And it has been such a great experience to read such a poignant story, while also getting to know the author and hearing her perspectives beyond just the words on the pages. Sometimes there is a certain distance perceived by the reader that keeps us at arms length from even real life stories – but Edie has laid it all out in a way that is so genuine, and especially with the insight from being part of her launch team, I can attest to how deeply relatable both she and her words are.
Even so, the stage of her life was not set on the same as mine. What really stuck with me was how different of a life I have had than Edie, yet I have experienced so many of the same things – just in a different context. Through the book, I kept nodding to myself with a sisterly affirmation of “me too” – am understanding of the heart that transcends time or place or knowing all the words to the songs…. (read the book so you can find out what I mean)
But what’s so amazing is how one’s unique story can give powerful insight and honest courage to confront our own.
I hear so often from women fearful of opening themselves up; that what they fear is that they are alone in their struggles – that no one else could possibly understand or relate to some of their deepest pains that have inevitably brought them to that place. But the truth is, we all have unique circumstances – but we are all human and bleed the same blood and cry the same tears.
The “raw and fresh and hard-fought” parts of our story are usually the parts we are trying to run from. It can be tough to stop the fighting with ourselves as we run – or even self-sabotage ourselves in an attempt to numb the stuff we don’t want to face. It takes courage to begin the process of re-writing the dialogue of those truths, and so often that’s what keeps us stuck and fighting.
What if, instead of fighting it, we surrendered to our truths and admitted our need for grace. What if, by simply shedding the layers that bind us and exposing the deep wounds, we could actually find our way home to the beauty we are searching for.
I highly recommend “All the Pretty Things“ as an excellent place to start this conversation with yourself. Lean into Edie’s story and how she so tenderly seeks to explore the truths about her own life – and then take the opportunity to let that resonate with the story that is within you.
That thing that you are scared to talk about, is often the catalyst needed to bring you into the light and expose your own threads of grace.