GLAD(ys) to be serving

Vulnerability is so much easier when you love yourself

Allowing people to follow your journey means being vulnerable at times. So, here I go.

Exactly two years ago I ended what was an extremely toxic relationship. As much as I would like to say that it was my choice, it was not. For the first few months I questioned what I ever did wrong to make someone treat me so poorly. I went back and forth about how it was their loss, not mine and “maybe if I would have done something differently.”

I thought that after over a year I had completely forgotten all the awful things that had been said to me throughout the past five years. Life had been nearly perfect thus far, why would I remember them?

Some of my work at LSNA has been to inform people on Democracy Ambassadors, the Bluest Lie campaign,  TIF Surplus and now sanctuary schools. Meaning, I’ve had to do more public speaking than I am comfortable with. After every presentation, I would criticize myself. Either my Spanish was too choppy or I got nervous and didn’t mention something important or I didn’t know my information well enough and that’s why I forgot. I would go on and beat myself up. Every….single….time! Lety, an Education Organizer at LSNA, mentioned to me how she wanted my voice. She was amazed at how I projected my voice in a manner that I was able to draw people in and keep the attention of my targeted audience. I was shocked. I let her know that was something I thought I needed to work on.

Nancy, the Executive Director at LSNA, offered me a ride home during a rainy evening. On the way home she just let me talk. I talked about my family. I talked about being in love with what I am doing, but I didn’t feel smart enough, or good enough for the job. I didn’t realize how negative I was being about myself until she, in her angry motherly voice said, “Okay! Enough of this ‘I’m not smart’ talk!”

I reflected on that conversation  a lot. I began to realize the stuff I was saying to them and to myself were merely the things I’ve been told I was. Years of hearing “You’re a dummy.””No one wants a fat bitch”  “Gladys is stupid. You think I would want to be with her?” “You’ve always been bad at public speaking” you begin to believe it.Even though nearly two years had past those words STILL had an effect on me.My confidence and self-esteem may have gone up, but clearly I still didn’t feel valuable, important enough, or worthy of the respect of others or the work I was doing.I always knew who I was, I just forgot. And these two women I barley knew at the time reminded me.

This obviously didn’t just go away because I realized where those negative thoughts were coming from. I still beat myself up sometimes. I still hurt. I’m just trusting the process of truly healing.

Until next time.

This entry was published on January 4, 2017 at 9:18 pm and is filed under Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink. Follow any comments here with the RSS feed for this post.

5 thoughts on “Vulnerability is so much easier when you love yourself

  1. Thanks for sharing, Gladys! So glad Nancy and Lety are there with you!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Thanks for being vulnerable with us ❤ It’s definitely not an easy thing to do. I can relate to some of these feelings though. I have to remind myself that I should be as nice to me as I am to other people when I start to feel this way!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Thanks for being vulnerable with us ❤ It’s definitely not an easy thing to do. I can relate to some of these feelings too though. I have to remind myself that I should be as nice to me as I am to other people when I start to feel/think this way!


  4. Teresa Larson on said:

    Thanks for being vulnerable, Gladys! I came into my YAV year fresh out of a toxic relationship, so I empathize with that unique struggle while you’re in a new city learning a new job. Do indeed trust the healing process, and trust that God is doing a good thing in you. Thanks again for sharing! Looking forward to following the rest of your YAV adventures in 2017!
    Teresa Larson
    2014-15 Chicago YAV


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