I don't love like her.
I don't pray like her.
I don't encourage like her.
I don't write like her.
I don't give like her.
I don't laugh like her.
I don't receive like her.
I don't speak like her.
I don't understand like her.
I am not her. She is she. I am me. Every single day, that will not change. And that is okay.
We often miss that. We fight to be less like us and more like them. I think we miss all the beauty in who we are. We preach individualism while we live to be like her, or him, or them.
I know I have. I spent most of my life trying to be like her - whoever her may have been or currently is. It changed as I grew. Surprisingly, it was never someone famous. I never wanted to be them. I wanted to be the ordinary girl who changed the world behind the scenes. I wanted to be the quiet girl who never turned down a new friend. I wanted to be the encourager that never needed to be fixed. I wanted to be the girl who loved so well that doubt never existed. I wanted to be all the graceful and simple, extraordinary, perfection I saw in her.
Sometimes it's healthy to look to another for inspiration and encouragement. What is not healthy is trying to abandon who we are to take on all that they are. We see them, and suddenly we no longer wish to see who we are. We slowly lose ourselves as we dive so deep into who they are. Then, we slowly begin to lose the person we sought so deeply for.
Look at it this way...
When we get so lost in who they are, our vision of who they truly are becomes distorted. We have focused so much on what we saw in them that was not in us, that now, all we see of them is just that - the painted picture of what we desperately sought to be. They are no longer a human being to us. They are a desire of who we wish we were. They are no longer a living being, but a goal we wish to accomplish. It's destructive on both ends. We are not loving them as they are, but as who we want them to be, and ultimately who we want ourselves to be. And we are not loving ourselves as we are, but as someone, anything else.
Where do we find ourselves after all of this? Exhausted. Destroyed. Humiliated. Let down. Abandoned. Hopeless. Unworthy. We make it back home, and suddenly we realize we don't even know who we are anymore. We don't even know who we were before. We can't go back. We can't erase all the shame we put on ourselves, all the guilt we put on our souls.
We can only move forward. We can only get to know ourselves all over again. Learning to love all the little broken edges. Learning to be us, and not her. Learning to see the worth that is firing through our veins. Learning to accept the beauty that is in you AND her, just as you both are and will always be. We've got to find that again. We've got to find ourselves, our love, our grace, our joy, our courage, our beauty, and every little piece of who we are - we've got to find it again, us again.
You are someone worth being - so be you.