Thursday, June 7, 2012

Underneath the Mask

grace for the good girl by emily p. freeman

This week, I've been reading Grace for the Good Girl by Emily Freeman. I've had this book on my Kindle for a while, and subscribe to Emily's blog, which is a beautiful combination of poetic words and pictures. Chatting at the Sky has become one of my favorite blogs. An introvert, she gets me... and doesn't even know me. So when she came forward and said she was going to go through her book this summer with a book club, I hopped on the chance. I've not been disappointed with the first three chapters.

One of my favorite quotes so far is, "The best part of hiding is being found." In life, when we try to go through it as a good girl (or good guy, as the case may be... I think guys have just as much trouble with expectations... they just may not be as emotional about it) we develop masks that cover our true selfs. I've been so afraid of failing that I've not just built a mask... I feel like a mummy =) If you've been reading my blog for a while, you know I read Holly Gerth's You're Already Amazing, and it really did help my outlook. I'm slowly learning that I'm ok the way that I am. That doesn't mean that I don't fall back into my good girl ways in times of stress.

Like day before yesterday. I planned my day out (that was my first mistake... grin). It was action packed. I was working at the hospital all day in quality, then had a Relay meeting at 6. I had homework in biostats (a mid-term four days into the class. Yes, I'm a little crazy. But it's all good) and wanted to walk and just didn't seem to have enough time in my day. I kept looking at the crazy to do list...

My to do list is a summary of my masks. That may not make any sense, but it summarizes what I want to accomplish. So much of this is based on unrealistic expectations of myself. On a good day, I recognize that it's just a working list and as long as I feel like I've accomplished something I've done well. For the bad days, I let all of those tasks swallow me whole, and I freeze. I want to breakdown... but good girls don't do that, right? We smile and keep doing what we need to do, even though we feel like we are dying on the inside. Which we are... we are slowly killing our spirit, crushing it with the weight of all of that unreal stuff we think is so important.

Being found is the best part of hiding... now that I can see that I'm hiding behind my smile, I may not necessarily admit it all the time (although I'm typing this out, and that's a very scary thing. Although chances are I've bored most people to death and they stopped reading earlier... grin). However, there is One who knows my thoughts and feelings. He knows that I'm dying on the inside. He doesn't die on the inside... He came to die for all the world to see. So I could be free.

Another point that Emily made was that it is better to be free than to be safe. Hiding behind these masks, we feel safe. I'm totally in my comfort zone. I may be miserable there, but at least I know my misery. Christ doesn't want this, though... He doesn't want me to be safe in my misery. He wants me to be safe in His freedom.

So much good stuff in the first three chapters. I'm excited for next week... now off to read some more interesting stuff. Biostatistics. Yay!


  1. "My to do list is a summary of my masks."

    I love that you said that. It's so true. I understand. Completely.

    1. I'm a recovering "to do" list addict =)Well, trying to recover, anyway...