In recent years I’ve heard a lot about ‘living in alignment,’ but it’s not always been clear to me what people mean. Over time, I’ve come to learn what it means through personal evolution and experience. And for me, it has meant being my truest, rawest and most vulnerable self as often as I am able.
What I’ve learned as I’ve become more and more aligned with the purpose that the Creator has created and crafted in me, not only am I living a life more compatible with my desires and my truth, I also find that my advocacy has shifted to draw more openly from the darkest and most difficult parts of my own experience– and that that is where my power comes from.
Before, I hid behind words like advocate and ally, shielding my personal pain and protecting myself by focusing on being a ‘voice for the voiceless.’ An advocate. Without ever admitting that I was the one who I most needed to speak up for.
But what I’ve come to realize in the past decade is that that was a mask. I was willing to step up for others, but not for myself because I was afraid to lift my voice. I was taught and I believed the lie that I was not worthy of being heard– that my struggles as a woman of color weren’t bad enough because I’m biracial, that my molestation and rape weren’t as bad as what other people had experienced so they weren’t worth talking about, that my struggle in a heteronormative society as an LGBTQ person wasn’t bad enough because I ended up with a man in the end, that the domestic abuse I experienced at the hands of my parents wasn’t bad enough because we’ve now repaired the relationship.
But there was always a flame in me burning, a voice in me stifled but fighting to get out. I raised my voice boldly for those who were worthy of being heard– everyone but myself.
Until more and more I began to accept that not only is every part of me and my story valid, the parts of my story that I was hiding from myself and the world out of shame were not, in fact, my shame to bear. All the voices silencing me were not my own, but those projected onto me by others.
So as I began to listen to myself and began to exercise my voice not only to speak out for others who are marginalized but to use my voice to speak out from my own experiences as well, my power has grown. My voice has grown. And my advocacy has grown.
Because I’ve realized that as my ownership and fearlessness in using my voice has grown, no one actually needs any other person to be their voice– because no one is voiceless!
My role as an advocate has evolved. My role as an advocate is to speak my truth, and to create space for the liberation of other women to speak their truths boldly, to create safe environments for them to cultivate their voices in a world that has taught them their voices don’t matter, provide platforms for them to exercise those voices and then to amplify, amplify, amplify!
Not only am I better at standing with and fighting for others, I am now more honest, more fearless, and more FREE. Finding and trusting and using my voice to drag all those “you’re unworthy” lies into the light and say “look at this pile of shit! it’s not right, and we– not me and not you– aren’t going to cower to it nor tolerate it anymore” has changed everything.
I can now be open about what I used to only allude to. I can now fight patriarchy, inequality, injustice, sexism, racism, xenophobia, homophobia and all forms of hatred and lies in this world with the full force of all my resources. My voice is my primary weapon and it has grown to be FIERCE. My voice is my also shield and it is STRONG. And now fully armed I am able to fight boldly, standing with sure footing and without fear in fully in the LIGHT. My journey– my calling — my purpose– is to push onward, show up as my whole self, to join a chorus of women who have gone before and to invite other women, especially the most marginalized among us, my wounded warrior tribe, to join along the way.
With my (whole and vulnerable) heart,