Monday, April 6, 2009

Day 11: Becoming Real

"It doesn't happen all at once," said the Skin Horse. You become. It takes a long time. That's why it doesn't happen to people who break easily, or have sharp edges, or who have to be carefully kept. Generally, by the time you are Real, most of your hair has been loved off, and your eyes drop out and you get loose in the joints and very shabby. But these things don't matter at all, because once you are Real, you can't be ugly, except to people who don't understand." The Velveteen Rabbit

About 5 years ago, this quote was sent to me in the mail. It was a framed piece with hand-lettered calligraphy, dried flowers, and hand-drawn accent flowers. There was a return address on it, but no name. I didn't know WHO had sent it (someone who lives close to me, but I never went over to find out). At the time, it kind of freaked me out because I couldn't imagine who sent me something without signing their name. The person obviously knew me because The Velveteen Rabbit is one of my favorite books and I love this quote.

Yesterday, I was inspired by the sunshine to start spring cleaning and as I was looking for some music to put on while I cleaned, I found the framed quote. In light of this 37 Day Challenge and the pursuit I'm involved in - Becoming Me (Becoming Real), I thought this was perfect for a post here.

Today, I was working on a project that requires me to tell my truth to people - about them. I realized that is an area that I am extremely challenged. If you asked me if I considered myself a liar, I would vehemently deny it. But as Marianne Willaimson said in a lecture (I can't remember which), "It's those little compromises of truth...". How do you tell someone their areas of weakness and their areas of strength? I never realized how hard it can be to find them both. To be real and make it quantifiable and meaningful. I am certainly an expert at doing it for myself, but to tell others what I think they need to do?! Yikes.

So now I know that one goal I have is to learn how to tell people the truth. Not the hurtful one, but the one they might need to hear so that they can take the opportunity to see themself through someone else's eyes. We all need that. We need the compliments and we need someone to day, "Ahem, yeah - that? Not so much." I think this one is going to take a lot of work...


  1. Telling the truth to people ... I wonder if it is a personality thing. I don't have any problem telling the truth to others but I do have to work on being gracious about it ... well, mostly with my husband. I never have to work at being gracious with my best friend. Hmmm, maybe the trick is to imagine how I would say it to her but that doesn't always work in the heat of the moment. But maybe truth telling isn't always best in the heat of the moment.

    Lots of good stuff to think about.

  2. Hi Cynthia-

    Thanks for your comments! I love engaging in this conversation... Your thoughts made me think about how I might approach someone in my personal life versus how I might approach someone in my work life. They might not be that different after all...

    Food for thought...



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