I used to hate getting dirty. I always kept all my things spotless and perfect and mostly wrapped in plastic, and always kept my clothes pristine. The look I subconsciously aimed for was for everything to always look and smell brand new, fresh out of the box or fresh out of the laundry.
I didn’t like getting tired either. I took breaks when I felt my stress levels rising, and to the best of my ability and discernment, always did everything in moderation.
But lately I’ve been walking through mud in my slippers. I’ve been letting myself get sweaty. I’ve stayed up all night to get projects just right. I stopped trying to write perfectly neatly in my notebooks and just scribble all over.
Because I realized that dirty and tired means LIVING. There is a great quote that goes, “A ship in harbor is safe – but that’s not what ships are built for.” Dirty and tired means that you’re actually working towards things, and producing and growing, not just being static. It means you actually used your things and read your books and learned your music (little note there for fellow musicians!). It means you invested your energies towards something, and have a passion!
No, I don’t walk around with stains all over my clothes and my things haphazardly thrown into my purse, and am not advocating those things. I’m still as organized as I can be. But I’m no longer hesistant to get down and dirty and sweaty, and for my things to look a tad more worn than if they’d just come out the box. Because with those, I feel like I’m actually experiencing life and enjoying the world Hashem put me in. I’d like to think that after 120 years, if Hashem asks me, “Did you experience everything I made available for you in the physical world?” I can say YES, I did Hashem, and it was incredible! And with them also is the knowledge that sometimes there are more important things than perfect, things like being genuine and unapologetically you.
And as part of my not-needing-to-be-perfect “rebellion,” I’m simply jumping right back into writing, no bazillion edits and asking friends’ opinions before hitting publish. This post may be “dirty” and unpolished, but it’s authentic and real and my attempt at making a dramatic entrance back 🙂 Hope it worked, haha.