Vulnerability; The Sign of Self Acceptance
I was sitting in my living room with one eye on my laptop and the other eye on the TV. NBC’s America’s Got Talent was playing and I was watching the performances and ignoring the banter and personal stories in between. It was an ordinary evening and I was feeling totally relaxed.
What happened next, inspired me to write.
My attention was pulled in when 28year old Brian Justin Crum from Los Angeles was welcomed to the stage.
What specifically got my attention was guest judge, George Lopez asking, “When you dream of being a singer, where do you see yourself?” Crum simply responded with, “I want people to feel things when I sing and that’s my goal.”
The guy opened his mouth to sing and America felt it.
I felt it! And although Jerry Patterson sitting next to me on the couch didn’t say he felt it… he certainly acknowledged the guy could really sing.
His story starts with him telling us that he was an overweight child and that from the time he was 6 or 7, he knew he was gay.
Like most of us, school was a story of hard times where he was constantly bullied. He’d walk past a group of kids and be called a faggot.
His mom who was his biggest cheerleader, tearfully said, “I used to fall to my knees and just pray for him…”
Brian came to a place where he started to believe the other kids… He said on the show, “Maybe they were right…. Maybe I am just worthless. But my mom believed in me and gave me the confidence to be who I am.”
He shared from his guts. His raw emotion and the emotion of his mother were undeniable.
He shared what we are not supposed to see…
What many people don’t know and I’m not sure how, is that most of us are inspired by an individual’s ability to be vulnerable.
We are inspired by vulnerability.
My first thought once he finished and the applause began was, “I wasn’t supposed to see that. I’m not supposed to know that.”
And that’s when this blog was conceived.
This guy practically made love to this song right before America’s very eyes. He caressed it. He finessed it. His doors were wide open and we could see deep into his pain. We could feel it. We knew it. We had experienced our own pain and he reminded us of it. He took us to that place when we were scared and alone but this time we weren’t scared or alone. He was with us.
His acceptance of himself and his circumstance comforted us.
He was completely vulnerable and vulnerability is the truest sign of self acceptance.
This kind of vulnerability makes other people feel safe.
Howie Mandel said, “We all feel like we are a creep and a weirdo and like we’re different. I suffer from mental health issues. We always feel alone and then we find out we’re not and that we all belong here…”
When I was ready to become a doula, it never occurred to me that I would bear witness to this level of vulnerability on a regular basis. A birthing woman or a newly postpartum mom is in her rarest form of vulnerability and as her doula, we are a trusted servant to her. We help create the space where she can fully accept herself and allow herself to become vulnerable.
What I can tell you with certainty is that I am better for it. I am stronger because of it and I am honored and humbled when my own vulnerability inspires others.
I’m a creep and I’m a weirdo but so are you and we both belong here!
Authored by: The Rock n’ Roll Doula