Some might say it’s a sign of weakness.
I’m not one of those people.
To be vulnerable means we open ourselves up to others. It means we put ourselves at risk for being hurt and feeling pain – we bear our hearts and souls. The alternative is closing ourselves off and feeling nothing.
I’ve been on both sides. I’ve shut myself off completely, built walls and shut down all for the sake of protecting myself. The reasons are vast, but, put simply, I thought feeling nothing was better then feeling the stabbing, twisting pain that comes with being open – the pain of rejections, loss or disappointment. But I’ve come to realize that pain is part of life. Pain is one of those emotions that’s meant to be felt as much as joy. It’s all part of living. And I want to live and experience things while I’m still part of this world. After all, even when I was closed off, I was still hurting myself. I was the one who chose to isolate myself, just as I was the only one who could make myself open up again.
Recently, I chose to take a chance. I chose to open myself again – open myself to the very real possibility of being hurt. It’s the most vulnerable I’ve been in years. I was terrified to even take that initial step. At first I felt frozen. I wanted to move, but I couldn’t. My feet were rooted to the ground. When I started to move forward, I could feel myself hesitating. In my mind I knew it would be like stepping off a sea cliff and free falling – and what if I hit the ground with a giant splat? What if there was no one to catch me?
That’s the chance I’m taking.
That’s the chance we all take.
But feeling something is infinitely better then being numb. Eventually we all have to take a leap of faith. We will all find that one thing, or things, worth fighting for, worth waiting for, worth opening ourselves up to. The possibilities life has to offer us are infinite – if only we are willing to notice them and take hold of them. Eventually we’ll all find something worth the risk.
To open ourselves to a state of vulnerability is truly terrifying. At the same time it’s also truly wonderful.
I’m well aware of the risk involved, but, to me, it’s worth it.