April 11th, 2006
what living out loud really means

There has been a theme in my life for the last few years of ‘letting go’, of a long list of things.
what people think
expectations
things
the need to control everything
what i want to happen in my career
how i want my relationship to be
the need to always be ‘nice’
the need to project the image of perfection (ha)
of needing to be liked
just to name a few. this theme is echoed in every aspect of my life and i have been recieving lessons at every turn. big things, such as getting married, moving across the continent and literally throwing myself into a new unknown life (leaving behind everything that is comfortable and familiar), launching into new territory with my book concepts, not taking the safe route in terms of doing what people might expect, pushing myself into new places creatively. And the slightly smaller things (but no less important), learning how to set boundaries with people, saying no when I don’t want to do something, allowing people to be upset with me, not clinging to ‘things’ for comfort.
the effect of letting go has for a time made me feel like I’ve “come out” to the world in the same way as a 1950′s housewife who has realized her life was a bit of a facade, in her housecoat and curlers who is on her front porch every morning drinking vodka and smoking. she wears a new confident smile. the neighbors pretend not to notice at first, but are noticably disturbed by her behaviour. the church lady on the corner decides to “pay her a visit” in hopes of saving her from the clutches of satan, tea cakes in hand. the world seems not to want to see her true self, don’t like her to question things. her recent lack of control a tad frightening to a world with rules. her truths like small bombs …
the truth that…
she is not in fact ‘nice’
underneath all of her make up there are moments when she could be considered ‘unattractive’
she has anger and it is powerful
she does not need to do it all for everyone else
she swears
she has a voice and is using it to question things
but what of all those other things that we liked about her?
her demure nature
her soft features
her painting the world in pretty colours
her joy in the smallest of things
her pretty self
they are all still there. and they are stronger than ever.

Apr 11 2006
2:50 pm
Felicity writes:

Fantastic! It’s like you read my mind but maybe there is something of every woman in this?

Apr 11 2006
2:51 pm
Shephard writes:

Visiting from Leesa’s…
I really enjoyed reading your post.
With very few exceptions, I related to all of your list and have been working on these very same things for years, peeling the onion back one layer at a time.
I love that others are putting this message out there to be read.
~S

Apr 11 2006
3:23 pm
jill s writes:

thanks for saying this…it’s SO how i feel…likei need to please everyone around me…when will it be my turn? to do what matters most to ME!? thanks again. jill

Apr 11 2006
3:32 pm
Andrea writes:

I just recently found your blog and I’m so glad you decided (for the moment) to keep the comments. I’m sure that everyone tells you this but your book and blog are really so meaningful to me. You have made a difference in my life and in the world and I just wanted to say thanks. Thank you so much for sharing.

Apr 11 2006
4:00 pm
pixie writes:

i don’t care if you have makeup on or not-you are beautiful. your light shines from so deep inside and lights up those delicious cheeks to a newfie pink like so many fairies i’ve read in books. you can smoke and drink vodka and you’ll still be shining in my eyes. you can have it all!!!
so much love and admiration for all of you and your experiences that inspire me each day…

Apr 11 2006
5:22 pm
patricia writes:

I’m all for the anger and swearing part.
Bring it on!

Apr 11 2006
5:30 pm
kristine writes:

She read my mind too! This post is so strong, so significant to me. I can relate in many ways. So steps I have taken and others I am in the process of working on. It is hard and requires courage and yet it is so liberating too.

Apr 11 2006
5:47 pm
Sabine S. writes:

Way too many friends of mine fit into the 1950′s housewife thing, and I’m trying to let them see the world and be a little more… reckless. I, too, have been trying to be more “me.” Your writing is beautiful, Keri. Every entry makes me think- I guess that’s why I enjoy it so much. Thankyou especially for this entry :-)

Apr 11 2006
6:25 pm
Lee writes:

Kudos on your brave journey to find your authentic self! Thank you for sharing. Those of us who are also on the journey appreciate your company!

Apr 11 2006
7:05 pm
cicilia writes:

I am goin through the same things you wrote here. Thanks for making me feel a lot better now.

Apr 11 2006
7:07 pm
Leonie writes:

i really dig the synchronicity between you and andrea’s posts this morning.
yes, we are neither introvert or extrovert. we are BOTH. we can be all things at all times. we can be joy, we can be sorrow, all intermingled. life isn’t easily definable. emotion does not live in neat boxes that is easily understood.
i am grateful to you for your truth living and discovering.
blessings,
leonie

Apr 11 2006
9:20 pm
mati writes:

thank you for this. i echo it in my own life right now. do i ever!

Apr 11 2006
11:05 pm
tiffany writes:

Hi Keri!
For the past three years I have been working on these same exact issues. (Therapy has helped a lot.) I WAS the woman who lived the Leave It To Beaver lifestyle and I completely lost myself in the process. (Funny how everyone thought I had the perfect life.) Now I am just turning 40 and truly feel like I am the authentic woman I always wished I could be. And yes, just like the woman you mentioned, I spend most of my summer in the front yard gardening, painting, and almost always with a big glass of wine (and sometimes without any makeup on)! Not all my neighbors approve, but now I feel truly authentic and really myself.

Apr 12 2006
12:06 am
Michelle T. writes:

Love this. It’s amazing how we can be created so differently and have so many of the same reactions. Thanks for putting yourself out there. You put my feelings into words today.

Apr 12 2006
1:53 am
Meghann writes:

What wonderful details!

Apr 12 2006
1:55 am
Meghann writes:

What wonderful details!

Apr 12 2006
3:41 am
Khani writes:

Keri,
All things bad DO PASS. I have lived long enough to know this. The full moon will be here soon…in two weeks spring will have sprung and the flowers and earth’s beauty will be your beacon once again…I admire your edginess..and yes we can be perfect at times and a bit rebellious..who cares..enjoy the earth messages..
Khani

Apr 12 2006
8:19 am
Melissa writes:

“There has been a theme in my life for the last few years of ‘letting go’, of a long list of things….”
Funny how letting go actually makes the important connections stronger.

Apr 12 2006
9:43 am
lisa deal (nookncranny) writes:

you know that thing that overcomes you sometimes where you go, “i absoluetly luuuuuurve being a girl!!” ?? well, to that today i add, i am bursting with how much i looooooveuvuv being a girl/woman in this point in time. i am so proud and pleased with the new inventions that women are becoming. the new layers of authentic we are daring to bare. it’s beautiful. keri, you are beautiful. we are all, all of us beautiful. even if our noses are too big, our skin is too bumpy, our butts are shaped like pears…we are growing the courage to be what beautiful really, really is. yipee us.

Apr 12 2006
12:36 pm
Hasti writes:

a really beautiful one.
thanks

Apr 12 2006
1:41 pm
vegasandvenice writes:

Letting go .. a wonderful but difficult concept. I applaud your ability to find the important things worth holding on to and letting go of those things that are not.

Apr 12 2006
2:26 pm
Katrin writes:

Thanx so much for this… I really needed to hear this just at the moment…
Sending you some european-spring-sun
Katrin

Apr 12 2006
2:38 pm
Kelly writes:

Oh, I think we can all relate to what you’re letting go of currently. Especially because there’s such an onus placed on women to keep up this antiquated ideal of femininity. “Be nice, don’t make a scene, project an image of perfect, and for goodness sake keep your knees together!”

Apr 12 2006
3:16 pm
Samantha writes:

That hit me. I see myself as all the “ugly” things..and somehow I am not made of what they are..that they are just my rough exterior. I want to grow. And in growing, I hope to be more comfortable with myself and have better practice of the ability to love others exactly how they are too.

Apr 12 2006
6:04 pm
Agustina writes:

I dont know you, but..you wrote exactly how i feel these days. Reading it was like sunlight :)
kisses from Argentina.

Apr 12 2006
10:22 pm
Gayla writes:

yes to all of it.

Apr 13 2006
5:03 pm
iva writes:

you have no idea how much this helped me
thank you so very much (all of you)
:)

Apr 14 2006
11:16 am
Swirly writes:

It takes balance of all the “good”, “bad” and inbetween to live fully in your own power. Of course the definitions of what is good, bad and otherwise constantly shift, and this is where things can get really interesting…

Apr 16 2006
9:41 am
Alana writes:

I’ve just moved back to Australia
“you’ve changed,” they say. “What is it?”
“I’m letting go.
we grew up together
and now you’re finally meeting
ME.”

Apr 16 2006
11:06 am
tracy writes:

Oh, my God. YES!!! It’s called being authentic. Hard at first — people like your mask and want you to keep on wearing it. Have to be ready to let go of the people who would hold you back. Heartbreaking. But as I continue to strip my mask off, I find that all these new people are seeing my actual face and comin’ on over to say “hello.” These are the people I want. What a gift is someone who loves, honors, and applauds what’s behind the mask.


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