I've come up with about 100 different names for this blog post and yet nothing seemed to sum it all up for me properly.
Throughout my life, I've gone through many stages of personality. Attaching myself to personal qualities and becoming obsessed with certain parts of "who I am." Often jumping in with both feet running, almost as though I've been trying to figure out exactly who I am or why I'm here. Blame it on being a Gemini; the chameleon, easily adaptable to different situations. Or blame it on the fact that I'm an identical twin, trying to find my individuality. Or blame it on wavering levels of self love and inquiry.
I've played a lot of 'roles' so to speak. From amateur gymnast to competitive soccer player to super yogi to sponsored snowboarder and mountain biker. Throughout my whole life, I've only been able to identify as one thing consistently: an athlete.
And while being an athlete is the greatest gift, truly- it comes with it's pitfalls. Identifying yourself as an athlete is a blessing and a curse. It can consume you, which is great for keeping focus, staying healthy and on top of your goals. For driving you to be better, for building confidence, and appreciating your body for more than what it looks like. But relying on something as fragile as the human body to feel like "you" is an incredibly dangerous game to play. When you get hurt, you get lost.
Who even am I when I'm not snowboarding or doing yoga?
Is it fair to put these labels upon ourselves at all? What if -god forbid- something happened and I could never do these activities again? I am not a snowboarder, though. I am not a super yogi. I am not a mountain biker. I am Jessica Pyper. I like doing these things, but I am not 'them' and they are not 'me'. I am not even an athlete. I am a human being who partakes in athletic adventures.
And so as I sit here with a heating pad on my lower back trying to heal, I realize that I'm not a cripple either. I'm just a person healing from an injury. And I don't know if this makes me feel better or worse, but I think it makes me feel better. I realize this is a very abstract blog post and probably leaving you feeling more confused than ever.
But can you relate?
A huge part of emotional healing and ultimate self love is loving yourself exactly as you are. Being content with yourself regardless of your abilities, in my case athletic abilities. So that's what I'll be working on: loving me. Not the me who likes to hit drops on my bike or do backflips on my snowboard, but the me who cries in yoga because I can't do a simple forward fold and the me who sits at home on a heating pad while everyone else goes snowboarding. Because like it or not, that's the "right now" me. Healing is a full body process. Resistance to what is, is futile.
Repeat after me: "I love myself exactly as I am"
That's today's work.