When I was in Junior High, in the summer we would go to our pool that was in the town. I didn't know how to swim but really there was so many people in there, you couldn't really swim anyway... so I didn't really worry. But one day all my friends dared me to go over into the deep end, they even went under the rope and then stood up and said " Lynn, it is just the same on this side. See we are standing up, it is ok, so come on over!" So being the insecure teenager that I was...I took the dare.
As I was standing there and talking to a friend and quiet proud to be in the DEEP END, someone accidently pushed me and I slipped down the incline of the deep end. As I frantically tried to get back up, there was just a sea of legs and no one seemed to even notice me. How true is that in life also...friends try to get us to do things ( that we know we shouldn't ) and then when we do and fail, they never seem to be around to pick you up or support you. I now can almost hear my Grandmother say "Lynn, friends like that...aren't friends at all! " So true Grandma.
I don't know how long I was under the water, but long enough to drink half of the pool and be scared to death of deep water for the next 30 years or so.
What made me think of this is today, someone at church made a comment about our family and how they wonder if they could even measure up to us or something along that line. I smiled but wanted to say..."You really wouldn't feel that way if you really knew us. We are just as normal as the next family. We struggle, we argue at times, we make mistakes, we get disappointed in each other but...we just keep trying, we keep saying we are sorry, we keep trying again to do what is right, we try hard to be there for each other. We try again to get back to doing what we know we should be doing. The bottom line is, I don't want people to think the Woodards are better than anyone else.
I have always said that I wish we could all wear a wipe off board on our backs...and on that wipe off board would be everything that has happened to us for the past week. I just think we would be less hard on ourselves if we really saw that each person is fighting their own battle. I think I would even treat them better or at least be more understanding IF we knew that this week, they were diagnosed with Cancer, lost a dear friend, or their husband lost his job. Or if their teenager was giving them a run for their money, or a friend of many years got offended and won't speak to them. Whatever the scenario is..I think we would be less critical of ourselves and more compassionate to others. There have been many times that we have gone through something as a family, the only reason I didn't share it may be because I didn't want to be judged or even worse...I thought I was the only Mother who had ever had to deal with this! That simply isn't true. Life is hard, really hard but...oh so worth it.
As I am getting older, I don't take Dares any more ( my Grandmother would be glad of that ) but I want to try and and not compare myself as much, and just try to be the best LYNN WOODARD that I can be. And remember that is enough!
Word of Wisdom for me especially.
Good night dear friends!
“You were put on this earth to achieve your greatest self, to live out your purpose, and to do it fearlessly.”
― Steve Maraboli