Welcome to This Gutsy Life

gutsy  \ˈgət-sē\ adjective

  1.    marked by courage, pluck, or determination.
  2.    a: expressing or characterized by basic physical senses or passions. b: rough or plain in style: not bland or sophisticated.

 

I’ve been wanting to start a blog for a long time. Nearly three years now, to be precise. I was held up for two reasons:

I couldn’t think of a name.

Now, that’s kind of a stupid reason and also doesn’t exactly sell you on my wit and creativity as a blogger. Way to kick things off, me. But I didn’t want just any name, I wanted the name. “No Guts, All Glory” is already taken, and as much as I love a good poop pun, “Poop, There It Is” or “Shit Doesn’t Always Just Happen” just weren’t cutting it for the project I was imagining.

But the real reason – the massive, paralyzing, skeleton-in-my-closet-that-I-sometimes-can’t-admit-exists-even-to-myself reason – is this:

It’s been really, really hard to be honest.

We’ve been through a lot in the last few years. Throughout, I have been told that I’m brave, that I’m strong, that people admire my ability to stay positive and keep a sense of humor. The truth is, I am often the opposite of all those things – you just don’t see it. It’s far easier to turn a hopeful, sugarcoated face to the world than to invite pity or admit that sometimes I’m a selfish, anxiety-riddled asshole who occasionally – or frequently, especially in that first year – just wanted to quit. I didn’t want pity, and I didn’t want people to know I was so very flawed, and so I mostly tucked those things away to silently fester. I couldn’t be honest. I didn’t have the guts.

But to try to represent our journey in a way that denies or glosses over the ugly parts rings painfully hollow. This life can be rewarding, inspirational, filled with joy – but it is also so goddamned hard, and sometimes the hard parts don’t have any redeeming qualities or a bright side, they’re just really goddamned hard. I couldn’t bring myself to write a blog that pretended that soul-crushing side of things doesn’t exist, not least because it could be damaging to anyone who might stumble upon my words in the depths of their own struggles. And so I didn’t write.

In the last three years, I have done a plethora of things I didn’t know I had it within me to do. These things were not brave. They were necessary. I can’t tell you how many times I have heard someone say they could never do what we do – but that’s simply not true. I’m a mother, and I do what’s necessary, and you would too. Writing these words feels like the first truly brave thing I have done.

And so I’m mustering my courage and setting out to be honest. I’m going to leave now and hit publish before I chicken out, because I’m still not really all that brave. But I’ll leave this promise here: This is a place for honesty. Sometimes it will not be beautiful; sometimes it will not be inspirational; often it will be covered in shit. And yes, there will be loads of crappy poop jokes. That’s this gutsy life.

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