Fragile: shatterable, easily broken, delicate, overly sensitive, vulnerable
Thinking about the human experience, I recognize that many of you understand what it’s like to feel vulnerable and fragile—as if just one more situation or comment could fracture you into a hundred pieces. Maybe you’ve always been very sensitive—aware of your feelings and emotions, cognizant of what others are experiencing. Perhaps, you’ve had more than your share of anguish and challenges, creating an easily broken heart.
If your life is pain-filled or devoid of love, it’s understandable that you may feel vulnerable or trapped in a reality that delivers biting sorrow instead of showers of joy. Or, maybe, you keep choosing to extinguish personal happiness because you were (hopefully unwittingly) the architect of another’s sorrow and believe you have a price to pay for the rest of your life. However—in either situation—you are being called to live into your highest, best self because you are valuable.
Many people claim they’re “tough as nails.” For me, fragility has been an overriding life characteristic. I’ve heard, more than once, “you are so sensitive!” to which my response is typically something like, “I’m okay with that; it helps me more mindful of, and responsive to, how others feel. So, I choose to honor my sensitivity instead of disrobing it and tossing it out the window.
Some people (at least publically) seem more resilient and less breakable because of their upbringings. They’ve been through the school of hard knocks, graduating with perfect “A”s, smiles on their faces that belay the pain or sadness that lurks behind the well-worn mask of “I’m just fine; really, I’m feeling awesome!” However, that silent mask of toughness screaming, “no one can ever hurt me again!” comes with a heavy price. Not allowing vulnerability, not sharing feelings (in a safe place), and not being free enough to, when necessary, be fragile disallows honoring your true heart.
When we treat others without respect or choose not to hear another’s truth/opinion/perspective, we lose the essence of meaningful conversation and interaction. We lose our humanity.
I have, too often, shut myself down to bend to the whims of another. I have set myself on high, unreachable shelves that protect me from being hurt. I’ve held on to “this is what’s happening, and I can’t change it” rather than standing up for myself. But all that accomplished was self-minimization.
When you choose complete subjugation of your needs, wants, and desires for anothers’, or allow a fellow human to take your strength and courage, or trivialize your sense of conviction, you give up what God desires: living into your highest, best version of yourself.
Fragile is a soap bubble floating through the air or the hand of a dying loved one you don’t want to leave.
Fragile is a broken heart or a broken life.
Fragile is a beautiful snowflake on a perfect winter morning or a crystal wineglass used to cheer love.
Fragile is comforting when a situation is painful.
Fragile is blessed when it speaks tenderness and love.
Fragile is sacred when it honors the essence of all who walk on this earth.
May today be filled with faith, hope and love,
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