You are a human. An imperfect, inconsistent, complicated, breakable being. You will not always say or do the right things. You will not always keep your promises. You will not always shine brightly, or lead by example, or walk a straight line.
You are human.
You are not perfect.
But you are tough and resilient, strong and sensitive, quiet and proud. You are sin and goodness. You are pain and persistence. You are a blemished, beautiful masterpiece.
And in this life of chaos and change, you must promise one thing – to stop apologizing for who you are.
Stop apologizing for the way you carry yourself. Whether you are proud or shy, whether you walk with your head high or your eyes down, whether each step is taken with confidence or others guide your path, wherever you are and however you present yourself to the world – you have nothing to be sorry for.
Stop apologizing for the way you look. Whether you are thin or curvy, whether you are muscular or sporting some healthy pounds, whether you wear makeup or leave your skin untouched, whether you fit into a certain label or create your own style – there is no need to be ashamed of who you are and want to be.
Stop apologizing for the way you laugh, for the sound of your voice, for speaking up when you have the chance. Stop apologizing for the things you care about, for your passions, for your drive to do something that others may not want to do.
Stop apologizing for the music you enjoy, the people you choose to spend your time with, the activities that fill your days. Stop apologizing for the afternoons you feel lazy or the mornings you get up early just to watch the sunrise.
Stop apologizing for your routines or lack thereof, for the trips you go on, the beers you drink, the money you spend or save.
Stop apologizing for the decisions you make, the paths you choose, the life you live.
Stop apologizing for the way you love – too much, too little, too crazy, too guarded. Stop apologizing for your heart and who you let in or let go, for your forgiveness, for your walking away, for your strength in moving on from someone that broke you.
Stop apologizing for everything you do or say, for the way you feel, for how you’ve grown up, for what you’ve learned on your journey.
This is your journey, and you will never get anywhere if you’re always looking over your shoulder, trying to ‘fix,’ to ‘change,’ to adapt to someone else’s rules. You will never get anywhere if you’re always comparing your existence to those around you, seeing how you measure up or fall short. You will never get anywhere if you’re always worried about who you’re hurting or how you’re affecting someone else. This isn’t about anyone else. This is about you.
And you cannot be sorry for the person you are.
So please stop apologizing for the places you’ve been and the things you’ve gone through. Don’t be ashamed of your guarded heart, cautious now, because of a previous relationship. Don’t feel guilt over leaving someone who is hurting you. Don’t feel the need to say sorry for your stubbornness or impatience or your over-emotional nature.
Don’t waste your breath on apologies that aren’t necessary.
Because the people you need in your life—the ones who will surround you, love you, keep you and claim you as theirs—they won’t ask you to apologize for being yourself.
So stop apologizing and start owning your humanness. Start loving with your whole heart. Start kissing people like you mean it. Start jumping in with no regrets. Start smiling. Start laughing. Start asking more questions. Start embracing your personality and quirks. Start forgiving yourself for being imperfect.