I don't know if it's just been a rough month or if the short days are finally getting to me, but I've been really hard on myself lately. I've made mistakes, fallen behind, fallen short, gained weight, lost my cool. And all of this is compounded by my instinct to judge myself for these "flaws" instead of the humanity to which they point. The very humanity I find so beautiful in others. So when my friend, Ruth Barzel, published a blog post about my "beautiful mess," it was easy to forget she was talking about the tangled mess of necklaces I wear daily and not, well, me.
I wear four necklaces every day, and I just added a fifth: Ruth's new mini compass. Every one of the necklaces I wear is meaningful to me in some way. (Read her post to find out why.) I think it's something I picked up from my mom. Back at Thanksgiving, I noticed she wears a few necklaces every day, too. There's something about keeping these gifts and memories and reminders on me--near my heart--at all times that I find comforting. And, unlike most other things in my life, I never worry about needing them to look perfect. They twist, turn, tangle, and unless they start to knot I let them do their thing. They are, most days, a beautiful mess, indeed.
Last week, a friend told me she wished she were more like me. While it was meant as a compliment, I felt as if I had not presented myself truthfully. "I'm such a mess!" She couldn't possibly see me for the mess I am and still think that! It's important that we share our imperfections, our shortcomings, our failures. They make us human, but what I had forgotten until reading Ruth's blog post is that they also make us beautiful. They make us real, recovered, reconnected.
Perhaps this is what my friend was telling me. Perhaps she sees me more clearly than I do. Because lately I have been blind to the beauty of my own mess. Now, I'm coming around. Thanks to a friend, a blog post, and a jumbled bunch of necklaces, I am reminded that I am indeed a mess, but I'm a beautiful mess. I am beautiful because of my mess. We all are. It's part of the Miracle.
P.S. You have to admit it's impressive that I can find existential meaning and truth even in jewelry!😂