name your storm.

i’ve always found it interesting that we call storms names.
that we personify such a destructive force.

we name them to avoid confusion.
if we name this thing,
then we can communicate effectively about it.

in therapy i’ve learned to do the same thing.

you can’t move forward until you know some sort of truth.
you can’t leave it in the past
you have to acknowledge what’s in front of you.
you have to call it by name.

only then will things start to change.

the truth doesn’t have to remain the same.
storms that were categorized as a “5”
can weaken as they hit cooler temperatures on land.

in our heads
things that were once catastrophic
can weaken once we give them space,
once we make them tangible.

if i never tell people how i’m feeling,
how will they ever know how to care for me?

if we don’t know a storm exists,
how can we ever prepare for it?

if we ignore the storm,
it does not make any less of a mess to clean up.

when the world seems like pure chaos,
at hurricane speed,
you have to hold onto something.

whatever it is.
whatever it takes.

and that can come at a cost.

things you once knew could be swept away,
people who once stood steady
now gone with the wind.

but holding on is better than standing on unsteady ground.
holding on is better than letting the storm take you down.

for me,
i hold onto the hope that tomorrow is coming,
and it holds greater joy than today.

statistically speaking,
we’ve made it through every day at a 100% success rate.

i remember nights I played Beyoncé at 3am,
not caring if the neighbors woke up,
because i was so. in. love.

i remember students who ask me questions about Jesus,
and make fun of me for dabbing,
(yet still continue to teach me new ways to do it).

these memories make me hopeful that
if they happened once,
they will happen again.

and i am here for that.

you can’t outrun the hurricanes that are in your past.
the destruction is far too great for that.

you can’t just walk away,
because this is your home.
this is the space you exist.

what you can do is start by naming the storm:
depression. anxiety. addiction.
insecurity. fear. shame. guilt.

from there you can find ways to move forward.
therapy. medicine. grace. apologies. change.
real heart work.

it is hard, but not impossible.
as Glennon Doyle says,
“we can do hard things!”

and as Brené Brown says:
“give yourself permission.”

whatever it is you feel you can’t do,
allow yourself to do it.

even if it is out of character.
even if it is new.
even if you never have.

you still can.

if yesterday you were a liar,
today is a great day to tell the truth.
if you’ve never let yourself dance,
turn on the new Nicki Minaj album and get to werk.
if you’ve always been tempted to skydive,
let’s show the world our courage.

these storms won’t be the end of us.
you do not have to face them alone.
in fact, it is impossible to do alone.

so let’s take them on together.

wherever you are in life,
whoever the world has made you to be,

i stand with you.
i believe in the person you are
and who you are becoming.

this is a place for you.
this is a place for the wilder.

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