Winter sort of slips into spring, but summer has a clear beginning. This weekend is it. Let it be an occasion to let go what’s not you and celebrate what is.
In practical terms authenticity can be about how you freshen up the decor of a summer house or spruce up your weekend wardrobe. (I should probably pass along those Pucci hot pants to someone a little younger… by like 30 years…) Spiritually it can be about encouraging your children or emboldening yourself.
Of course sometimes being yourself doesn’t feel up to snuff. Just yesterday I was rejected by an agent who “didn’t fall in love with my writing.” Well dang. I just write as myself. I can’t remember who said it, but what other people think of me is none of my business.
Sometimes it’s an outright challenge. Think women in Afghanistan. Scholars in China. Entrepreneurs in Russia. This is not meant as a political statement, but in the days of Victorian England poor Oscar Wilde spent two years in jail arguably for “being himself.” Although history and his own writings say he wouldn’t have had it any other way, it wasn’t always easy. Wilde also famously said of his incarceration, “If the queen can’t treat her prisoners any better than this she ought not to have any!” or words to that effect. Thank heaven we live in a time and place that respects our personal liberties; and on this Memorial Day, thanks to our armed services for protecting them.
Just something to think about as you arrange those hydrangeas, send your children off to camp, don your straw hat, and saunter off to a summer lunch. Be yourself, and love it.