The world is different than it was 30 years ago, there’s no doubt about that. But with those changes bring about those who haven’t adapted or changed perspective, maybe. We all evolve as time and experience play upon us. Negatively, sometimes, when the experiences are bad and we refuse or have no interest in being self-aware, or positively, when we focus on what is to be learned from experiences (even painful ones).

But not everything can change, can it? We have a fundamental truth inside ourselves. Something deep and so ingrained that I’m not sure it can be verbalized. It is coated and wrapped and maybe even seared shut with experience and protectiveness and anger and love and hate and hubris and passion and all of the thoughts we’ve ever had. We change with time and experience, yes. But do we change the core of who we are?

I’ve challenged myself to do two things over the next month: To focus on my own gifts and strengths; and to complete the Love Dare. I am on day three of each.

My goal isn’t to rescue our marriage, as it’s not flailing and I don’t want to give that impression. My goal is to raise my own self awareness of the strength that lives inside of me and of the distances that I will journey to find it.

Steve worked late last night, as my “task” (as outlined) was to do an unexpected act of kindness. I fried some pepperoni and poured him a cold beer. I appreciate you so much, I told him, as we sat in front of the fire. I know you do, you show me everyday, he said, It’s yourself you don’t appreciate.

I am kind-hearted. I empathize and genuinely care about others. I believe that we are much too hard on ourselves – expecting perfection when that isn’t even a realistic expectation. I need to learn to stop setting unhealthy and unrealistic standards of what I should be.

I am smart and strong and healthy. I am loving and kind. I am deserving of each and every gift and blessing in my life, even when they drive me crazy. I work to the best of my capabilities, honestly and truly. I am strong enough. I told Steve last night as he wrapped his warm arms around me.

And I am.

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