Embracing the Gift of Rejection

Play it safe.

 

That's the way I would approach life before I opened myself up to constant rejection. 

 

Sometimes, well, a lot of times, just the fear of being rejected can keep us from moving forward. 

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It just so happens that three of the biggest parts of my life are full of rejection and little dashes of acceptance sprinkled here and there. 

 

The thing is, we can't make people accept what we have to offer. 

 

The whole "bringing a horse to water..." creed has never meant more to me, than it does now. I get it...

 

From sharing the Gospel, to showing others a more natural way to approach healthcare, and to encouraging others to give my writing a chance, there's this pattern that follows the sharing of those things that is hard to accept. 

 

"You're project is not what we're looking for..." 

 

"I know I'm going to hell, and I'm okay with that..." 

 

"Thanks, but no thanks..." 

 

"Maybe, next time..." 

 

I could go on and on.  

 

I'll be honest with you: my heart stings each time, sometimes I cry, sometimes I get angry, but every time I think, "If you would just give me a chance."

 

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Embracing rejection is not something that any of us are good at. It's certainly not something that we expect or we get used to.  

 

I consider all of the ones who have really made a difference. Those brave ones that went thru years and years of hearing "Not now...but thanks..." . 

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Over and over and over again.  

 

J.K.Rowling. (The manuscript for Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone was rejected by 12 different publishers before being published). 

Oprah Winfrey. (She was told she should perhaps find another career entirely after being told to stop meshing her emotions through her news reporting). 

Albert Einstein. (Was told he would amount to nothing because he couldn't speak or read until later in childhood). 

Thomas Edison.  (His inventions failed thousands of times before he got it right.) 

Walt Disney.  (Fired because he "lacked imagination"). 

Emily Dickinson. (Less than a dozen of her poems were published while she was alive. They only saw the value of her work posthumously).  

 

I could go on. 

 

Maybe rejection will never leave us smiling. Maybe we won't ever "get over it" every time it comes our way.  

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I believe the way to truly embrace rejection is by understanding that it's just part of the journey.  

 

You may feel that a piece of you chips away with every back turned. But, in reality, the chipping just reminds you that this life is worth living and feeling for. 

 

We can choose to leave the pieces where they fell, or we can pick them up, and make a beautiful mosaic.  

Maybe our lives are a little like lattes. Swirls of bitter and sweet. Creating a masterpiece of colors and tastes for others to enjoy.  

Maybe our lives are a little like lattes. Swirls of bitter and sweet. Creating a masterpiece of colors and tastes for others to enjoy.  

 

So we just keep sharing anyway. Because the next share could be the next "Yes". If it's important enough to you, you'll keep attempting. Driven purely by the passions within. The passion to get people to finally understand.  

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Because someday, they just might. As long as you keep embracing rejection along the way. 

 

love, Alicia  

 

 

 

 

 

Blackberries & Jalapeños

Growing up, we never had blackberries or jalapeños in our home. 

 

My mother never purchased these foods because, for starters, none of us cared for spicy foods. And second, blackberries can be expensive. 

 

While I can't recall the first time I ate these beautiful creations of God, I do remember they both became one of my favorites to eat.

 

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Today, as an adult, I grow my own.  

 

They're two of my ultimate favorite foods. 

 

As I sat in the humid sun today, I was snacking on some of these organic berries.  

 

I studied it for a bit before putting it in my mouth, realizing, that without distraction, how incredible it's design really is. 

 

Which gave me a smile. A smile that reminded me Who's original design this has always been.  

 

And, it's quite incredible. Beyond our understanding how God's creativity in design is really limitless.  

 

I won't apologize for overthinking this. Because all of the other times I sat to eat these treats I didn't consider the Designer at all. I just took for granted the fact that these intricacies are to be quickly and mindlessly consumed.

 

And I say all of that to say that maybe our days would be a bit more sweet and spicy if we just slowed down to consider the creativity of the Great Designer.  

 

The purpose behind the trouble it took to invent seeds and heart chambers and digestive systems and solar systems. And to know that above all of that complexity and beauty, that we are His favorite accomplishment. We are. 

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The filthy, selfish, hateful ones.  

 

The ones that would rather drive-thru for fries than slow down for backyard produce. 

 

Waiting for growth and fruit and to admire and consume the sustenance is hard to wait for. But, it's worth the wait. And it makes us happier, healthier, and better equipped to make our Creator proud. 

 

He is good. His creation is good. And it's so complex and insanely mind-blowing for those who dare to truly notice.  

 

Serving that Creator means taking care of the bodies He loaned to us: His greatest creations. And so, remain purposeful, friends.

 

Dare to examine and really be aware of the goodness found in the goodness of God. The foods He's given, the bodies, the abilities, the surroundings, it's all a gift.  

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What are your "blackberries & jalapeños" foods? Will you purpose to see the care of God the next time you encounter His creation?  

 

 

 

 

Why I've Stopped Caring If You Like Me Or Not

Recently, I've stopped caring. 

 

I've had to. It wasn't healthy and it's not worth the trouble. I see so many mom bloggers desperately trying new things to grow their following. And their desperation shines through more than their actual content does.  

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If you want to know why I've stopped caring if you like me or not...and whether I care if this blog grows or it doesn't...then read on. 

 

I was recently told by a good friend that this blog and this following may never "make it big".  

 

Because, "I don't have what it takes to make it."

 

It's not because I'm not likeable, or I don't try to expand the following.

 

I've tried what I could over the past five years and it's always taken this steady, slow, organic sort of pace.  

 

Its because I'm not willing to be something I'm not to make all of you wish you were me

 

It's because I'm not going to stand in front of brick walls, dressed like a Target model, with a latte in my hand, and toddlers pulling at my dress all with a hysterical smile on my face.  

 

It's because I really don't care to spend hours and hours and hours editing photos, doing giveaways, and telling people to make sure they turn their notifications on.  

 

I'm not willing to trick my followers into liking posts and engaging, just so more traffic comes my way. 

 

And I'm not willing to make my whole platform all about myself, portraying a fake portrait of motherhood, while I miss out on real life motherhood all around me. 

 

I've probably accomplished what most bloggers would only dream of. And it happened totally organically. And it happened because God spurred it on to happen.  

 

That accomplishment was having a blog post shared on radio stations, websites, and read by half a million people in two days.

 

It got the attention of celebrities and other influencers that have no clue who I am.

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But that attention was short lived. And that sort of accolade was only temporary.  

 

I can't, and I won't, spend the rest of my motherhood trying to gain it back, somehow. 

 

At my core, I'm a yearner for acceptance. 

 

I want people to accept the choices I make and I take it really hard when people don't. In other words, I'm an insecure decision-maker, although I'm almost always confident in my choices.

 

I feel rejection. I feel stressed out. I feel like a freak. I've been this way since I was a teenager. It's been hard to change.  

 

I see my fellow bloggers desperately trying to make it big and I feel for them.

 

Then there's the influencers that already have a following. They start blogs and small businesses and make it big the same day they begin. And I get jealous.  

 

But I'm tired of feeling jealous. It's exhausting.

 

And since I'm not willing to write what you want to hear, or photograph what you want to see, or spend the hours that require me to become BlogFamous, then maybe I am accepting that maybe my influence is supposed to stay small. 

 

Thats fine.  

 

It is.

 

Because maybe a smaller following actually yields a deeper influence in the end. And if I had to choose between the larger audience and the more shallow influence, or the smaller audience and deeper influence...well, when I put it that way, it's easy to choose. 

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If God wants to grow this blog, He can and He will. The timing will be perfect and I'll be ready for that day.

 

But for now, I'll be proud of what I've given to my small ring of influence. 

 

I've given truth, laughter, tears, sorrow, and passion.

 

I've shared ideas, concepts, and encouragement.

 

And most recently,  a book that has touched whoever has read it. Even though the royalties remain poor monetarily and rich in impact; That's payment enough for me. 

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Maybe that's the sort of royalty we should all strive for. Impacting lives. Impacting souls. Being an encourager instead of an influencer.  

 

I surely don't want to influence Mothers to feel less than just because of something they read and saw from me.  

 

And that's sort of the way the blogging world is. It's less about being honest and more about making you feel envious.

It is essentially fueled by envy.

 

Bloggers who harbor envy as it looks to the success of another blogger, all while  displaying beauty in ways that spurs the viewers heart to invite envy inside:

 

Food.  

Style. 

Products.

Crafts. 

Travel. 

 

I can't compete with all of that. I'm just me.  

And I don't have time to show you anything beyond that. I've choosen to live life authentically.  And maybe that's just not enough for what the blogging world requires of me. 

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So, I guess I don't care what you think about me anymore.

I'll keep writing and sharing. But I won't even try to keep up.

 

This is Honestly:Motherhood. And that's how it'll stay. 

 

-Alicia