This came to me over the weekend, and I felt a strong urge to share it here.
I’ve been independent for as long as I can remember. The world looks at an independent woman and thinks strength, resilience, and the admirable ability to stand alone against the winds of diversity. For the longest time, I basked in that perception and wore it like a badge of honor.
The thing is, independence, while empowering, can also be a hefty chain that one can drag around. An armor so heavy that it often makes it hard to reach out and connect. I’ve personally clung to independence like a shield, holding it up against the world as if to say, “I don’t need anyone.” I’m ashamed to say I even did it in my marriage for many years.
You see, if you knew my entire story (which you will very soon), you’d quickly see that my cherished independence isn’t just a trait I picked up along the way; it’s deeply rooted in the complexities of my childhood trauma.
I’ve been peeling back the layers of my past as I write my personal memoir I’ve come to the realization that the badge I so proudly wore has actually been a double-edged sword, inadvertently keeping me confined in a smaller space than I know God had intended I occupy.
Chances are, you’ve heard the saying, “If you want to go fast, go alone. If you want to go far, go together.” I have, too, but it’s wisdom I acknowledged but never embraced. My ego, my pride, and a lingering pain from days long past have often muzzled me into silence, preventing me from asking for help even when I needed it the most.
My social feeds are flooded with stories of leaders who have banded together, amplifying each other’s voices, lifting each other up, and creating waves of change. Yet, I’m over here, fighting every battle on my own. It’s exhausting.
The irony in all of this is that the independence I have fought so hard to earn and protect is now something I have to learn to let go.
So here I am, sharing this not just as a confession but as a stepping stone. To anyone feeling weighed down by their own independence, know you’re not alone. I’m learning, maybe a little later than some, that it’s okay to lean on others to share the load. And maybe, just maybe, in doing that, we can all go a little farther than we ever imagined on our own.
Here’s to letting go.