Bittersweet Honor

I feel honored a good amount lately, and it’s such a heartwarming experience–like my heart literally warms up in my chest, and I feel my face change into a happy/sad expression. In these moments I unconsciously raise my hand to my heart as if to protect and hold it. I’m happy to be respected for my work and research and time and ideas and being brave enough to share them. And I’m sad. I’m sad because I’m twenty-five and my heart aches for my parents to show me that same kindness.

I’m grateful, of course, to walk on the same ground as another, to be lifted up on their shoulders for that symbiotic moment. It’s validating. A great reminder that I am worthwhile. That I have something to offer. That connection is feasible and even abundant. Sometimes I just catch a snippet from and old tape wearing itself out in my head, telling me I’m a stupid brat and should shut up. Telling me I don’t deserve distinction.

So, feeling honored is bittersweet? I suppose that’s what I’m saying. I’m really super grateful for it, and I genuinely believe those moments are some of the most reparative–along with those first few times as an adult where my fears were splayed out and raw and I was shown love and acceptance, not the abandonment I was positive would follow. I feel so blessed when the opposite of my fears is true, it helps me remember they aren’t real life. What a jumbled up ball of emotions we humans are, eh?

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