We all have some. Each and every single one of us. Some carry it in pretty little satchels where it is tucked neatly into strategically placed compartments, while others drag it behind them in plastic bags where something inevitably falls out from each newly created hole. I'd like to say I'm one of those who carry their baggage in a pretty little satchel, but I can't. Truth be told, there are are times when the holes in the plastic bag I'm dragging get so big I have to put them into a pretty little satchel to hold them in, but in the end, it all comes out anyway.
That's the thing, isn't it? When is the right time to show it, to let it out? Is there even a right time? Yes! In fact there isn't just a right time, there is an EXACT time and its different for each of us. It is that time in which you are most comfortable with the you you are and honestly trust the other person enough to let them see and know the real you. Here's the thing. Yes, there is a reason for this - there's always a reason.
Meeting people is simple, but letting them KNOW you is hard; its scary, its life changing, its well, its just not easy. But there is more to it than just that. There is more to this thing than just letting others know who you are, you also have to be willing to know who they are - the baggage that they carry also. This is a great honor and a true blessing. One that should not be taken lightly.
One thing that I'm learning is that no matter how open you are with another, give and take, they may still not be willing to share. And even when they do, they may not always be comfortable and trust that you are truly accepting of their baggage. Even when you are. Even when you want them to understand that it is who they are that really matters, that you are really there to help them carry that satchel or bag. That you want to.
So, to those who have read about my baggage, who know more than I've shared publicly and to those who I have had the privilege to listen too...
Carry it strongly and proudly. It is a part of who you are, BUT...and please understand this if you hear nothing else from what I have to say tonight...YOUR BAGGAGE DOES NOT HAVE TO DEFINE YOU! You can carry it to remind you where you've been, what you've been through, and to keep you sound, but you don't have to let it run you. You can rest assured that you are not alone.
And because I know there are people reading this, shaking their heads, calling me naive (in the least), I know that there is negative baggage, there is that crap that is just that, crap...to which I need to say my peace - carrying that baggage is a person. I special, kind, lovable person. A person, who may hide behind their baggage, but can still be cared for, and yes, even loved. Even if they fight you every step of the way.