For a long time, I was stuck in this place of needing to feel “fixed.” It seemed like I was the only one that was internally suffering from past and present experiences, and it was hard not to look at the contrast between myself and the people around me. I would sweep my eyes around and be hit with jealousy that the grass seemed to be so much greener on the other side. The healed side. The side where I so desperately wanted to be. Where everything was perfectly pristine and any former damage had long been restored; no traces of it left behind. How did other people get to that point? And why wasn’t I filled in on the secret to getting there, too?
My grass had seen better days. It was suffering (partly due to my lack of attentiveness, if I’m being honest.) It was overgrown and wilting, dry and discolored, and in desperate need of nourishment. I had given up on trying to maintain it. Why bother, when all I really wanted was to hop on over to the other side where everything was already clean and kept? I didn’t want my dead reminders. I wanted something crisp and new. If I could just manage to get over that fence – jump over one last hurdle and cure myself completely – then everything would be okay. I was so close to reaching it, I could almost feel the freshly cut pieces under my feet as I walked across them. I imagined how much better it would feel than my own. Rich. Full. Alive. I would have given anything to be on that side of the fence. I wanted it so badly, it hurt.
I was discouraged thinking about others who had overcome obstacles, and who had been able to leave them behind so much easier than I had. I felt like I was still drowning while they were swimming right past me, effortlessly and with ease.
Why was I left behind to sink? Why was everyone’s grass greener? Why was I the only one NOT moving forward?
I had yet to realize that the ground on which I was dying to walk on, in reality, was actually just a mirage. It was a figment of my imagination; one I had let myself believe wholeheartedly. I had conjured up this idea in my mind that there was a quick, easy solution. It would be like going to the doctor for a common illness. “Take this medicine every day for 2 weeks, and you’ll be as good as new!” Then I would be free to move on with my life. No problem!
But healing doesn’t work that way. There is no magic anecdote. There isn’t one right answer. You can’t snap your fingers and make it all better – just like you can’t have a beautiful stretch of grass without taking care of it.
You have to do the work.
I had been so concerned about which way other people were moving, that I was failing to take accountability for my own lack of progress. I was looking everywhere but at myself; at what I needed to do and change in order to have what I desired. I needed to stop playing the comparison game – because wasting time worrying about how everyone else got to where they ended up, wasn’t getting me any closer to arriving there with them.
So, I stopped looking in every other direction but right in front of me. And I realized that when I wasn’t busy peeking my head over that invisible fence, I had more time to focus my attention on what really mattered – the ground under my own two feet and only tending to my sides needs. I learned that when you devote your time and undivided attention to what belongs to you and only you – you become more aware of your capabilities than ever before.
Now when I look around at my own grass, I can see my hard work paying off. Because just like me – it’s growing. It’s slowly turning the most lovely shade of green. It’s lush and fresh. It fills me with so much pride and joy that I just want to run through it barefoot like a little kid. I want to feel every cool, coarse blade as they squish between my toes. I want to appreciate every single beautiful piece of this landscape. Because I no longer envy someone else’s grass; I’m too busy bringing my own back to life. And even though it’s happening at a slower pace than what I had originally hoped for…and there are still imperfect patches to work on…having patience and remembering that good things take time, has shown the most successful results.
I’m not sure if the grass is greener than mine on the other side. I haven’t cared to look in awhile. But over here, it’s thriving…and that’s enough for me.