It’s not your job to validate me!

Laurie looks to the heavens on a stormy day in the mountains
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Hey everyone, This post is very hard to write. When I first launched my Daily Adventure Blog (originally called Daily Adventure Log) it was exciting and I had the strong feeling from inside that this was the right path for me.

After posting my first few adventures I got some comments and was surprised and thrilled. I was also having a fantastic, great time with my shiny new toys.

But then, the page views tapered off and my old siren songs of self-doubt and external validation obsession kicked in. Instead of finding pleasure in the creative process and enjoying all of the new adventures I experienced, I worried that I was too self-absorbed and writing for the wind. And if you are reading this, then I guess I was wrong about at least one of those!

I needed to get back to my roots, so I hauled myself back up the mountain to think about why what used to be so fun was now giving me stomach aches. It’s troubled my soul for as long as I’ve had memory, that feeling of not being “good enough” as I am. The constant feeling that I need to make myself better, brighter, stronger, nicer and thinner in order to fit in. It’s all same old, same old, and I wanted to get it out of my head and out of my darn blog! After all, adventures are fun, right?

Then it hit me, that adventures are also discovery. I found out on the mountain that day that the reason I got fat, stayed fat and regained fat is my inherent lack of worth. I’m scared to let people know me for real, as I’m scared that once they do, they will bail. I’ve had that happen more than once. Like my lucky lizard chameleons, I’ve gotten into the habit of blending in to please whoever I’m near.

That’s how I’ve had great results with Weight Watchers, Body for Life and other programs for weight loss and fitness. I work really, really hard and being in a program gave me something to turn into, something to have in common with the others in the program, a built-in goal to achieve. Nirvana. I never had to actually look inside myself. That’s a great attribute when you fear you really are a stinking, terrible mess.

I’m terrified to say here, like the wonderful Maggie O’C from Misc. Maggie, “What do YOU think of me?”; I’m even more terrified of asking “Laurie, what do YOU think of me?”

So while I’m doing the internal work with my Daily Adventure Blog, I want to be brave, real and connect with others who see me – not cleaned up me, nice me, perfect me, but me. I guess for that, I need more practice being real, wherever that leads. And while I would truly appreciate your feedback and cherish every comment, every “like” and all of the rest, it is not your job to validate me. It’s my job. My hope is that we can travel together, support each other, and learn how to experience our own lives.

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It’s not your job to validate me!

9 thoughts on “It’s not your job to validate me!

  1. calensariel

    Your paragraph up there about being a part of WW etc., is so much my journey (and tons of other people’s) too. You’re right about the need to look inside, because just losing the weight and then gaining it back over and over and over again proves that we’re not really facing whatever our problem is head on.

    It’s trite to say it’s a matter of self-acceptance, that if we could just accept ourselves for who we are we could shed our extra baggage and be healthy. But there’s a lot of stuff piled on top that self-acceptance that we have to dig through to get there. It’s hard. And I think too often we get tired and throw in the towel. That’s when we start to gain it all back. Maybe when we ever get that pile sorted through, that’s when our lifestyle changes will become permanent.

    I think I’m learning something new this time. That I have to stand back a little further and look at the BIG picture. I tend to put my weight loss efforts — all my efforts about any kind of change, actually — under a microscope so I can micromanage them. I get flustered and panicked when I screw up then. But taking the long view this time seems to be giving me a little more room to breathe, to slow down and take some nice slow, deep breaths. This time I’m not in such a hurry. So I’ve LEARNED SOMETHING NEW this time around. That’s what we hope for, that we keep learning and eventually we’ll find our answers. Now I just need to learn how to equate that with my life in general as well as with food issues.

    Hang in there, Laurie. This really is the most important journey you can take! And as Nancy Thayer says, “It’s never too late — in fiction or in life — to revise!” That’s what we’re doing. We’re revising our lives. We just have to decide how we want them to be!

    Reply
    1. Laurie@DailyAdventureTales

      You are so my inspiration on my current journey. Yesterday I discovered I had lost 20 lbs.since October through adopting your attitude of “life happens and that includes food”. I’m guessing my blue funk just shows that I am dealing with my issues more and cutting closer to the bone. I won’t give up trying to live my life more fully, with more fun and to connect more with people – even though it is getting uncomfortable. Thanks for being my friend and I hope one of my adventures will include you (my state or yours!). Yesterday I met a lady at the YMCA who wants to do Zumba for the first time tonight. I tried to weasel out since I’m not really a night exerciser, but I thought about your encouraging everyone for Lent and so agreed to be her Zumba buddy tonight. See? Your stone is making many ripples in the pond.

      Reply
  2. kgrahamjourneys

    I know what you mean about needing validation. I’ve often felt that way, but I’m getting better at not worrying about what other people think & just doing what I feel is true for me. I started my blog as a way to keep my hand in at writing and it is exciting when someone comments or likes what you’ve written. It’s also human nature to wonder why a post doesn’t get any attention. But I try to not take too much notice, as it’s not really why I started the blog.

    I’ve always liked this quote: If you write to satisfy your soul, you will satisfy your readers (Mary Grant Bruce).

    Don’t ever feel like you’re writing to the wind… because writing is a creative outlet and, if you’re like me, you’re writing for your own fulfillment. Anything else that comes from it is a bonus… or at least that’s how I look at it. Good luck πŸ™‚

    Reply
    1. Laurie@DailyAdventureTales

      Thanks so much for taking the time to comment. Tell you the truth I was seconds away from deleting this one as being too “sorry for myself”. Funny thing is as soon as I got it out of my system I felt more on track and able to go back to focusing on my adventures. But I’ll let it ride to remind myself of where I’ve been and where I want to go.

      Reply
  3. Maggie O'C

    I like your wishing rocks. I’m on WW, too. And you are right, nothing in WW or life or work is dependent on the validation of others. If we can’t validate ourselves, it is all so much noise. I had a weird dream the other night. I don’t know the specifics but there was a ton of treasure/money something found and the moral of the dream was. Money won’t do you any good if you don’t find yourself valuable. Huh, kinda weird?

    Thanks for the video. You have a good voice. I hate my voice πŸ™‚

    Keep blogging!
    maggie

    Reply
    1. Laurie@DailyAdventureTales

      Pretty deep dream Maggie! I’m going to ponder that one. I think you will do well with Weight Watchers.
      I haven’t really written about my own WW experience, but when I was 40 I weighed almost 300 then went to WW and lost 130 lbs in two years. During that time, I would dream I ate sooo much food and I would be so mad at myself. Then I’d wake up and think, “Yahoo! Ice-Cream for 0 points!”. Despite my other fitness journeys and troubles, I have kept over half of that weight off (and sometimes much more) for the last 12 years and the group support was a big reason why I made headway combating my food/eating compulsion. Thanks too for the compliment about my voice. Speaking is my passion, but I’ve felt weird about it since I had a bike accident a few years ago and my mouth was split open – they sewed me back together in the ER and I look pretty normal, but my upper lip is very thick inside and numb, so my enunciation isn’t as good as it used to be. One reason I make my little videos is to practice and get over my fairly recent fear of speaking in public, because I really, really love it. I’m even thinking of psyching myself up to try podcasting. Long story short, thanks for the encouragment. Truly appreciated.

      Reply
      1. Maggie O'C

        Wow, I didn’t know that speaking is your passion! Well it should be because you have a lovely voice and I never would have guessed you weren’t comfortable. I could never make a video of myself. xo

        Reply
  4. Mom

    Laurie, I’m so proud of you. You have such insight and it transmits to others. Your dad would love to hear your lovely voice saying again “I love you!” You brought out in him the ability to say that. XOXOXOXOXO

    Reply

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