Bee Strong is one of our attitudes that I have always worn with a little trepidation – ironic, right? I’m going to confess – I wear strong like a badass! I can walk into a room with a little swagger and have everyone convinced that I can handle anything! And most of the time I can. But there are times I’ll walk away with a smile on my face, drive straight home, walk through the door (still smiling), go to my room (still smiling), climb into my bed - and then have a good cry! Some may not call that strong, but there was a time I couldn’t muster up any swagger (didn’t even know what it was) much less walk into a room where there might be a hint of discomfort.
I have a bad habit of comparing myself to others. When I met some of the women at Thistle Farms I felt terribly out of place. They have been through the unthinkable and I just knew they would look right through me and know I had never had to be as strong as they had in their lives. But after a while I realized, they didn’t care about that, there is no chart that says you are stronger because you overcame X, Y and Z but you are not as strong as your friend because you only overcame X.
Being strong is not a competition – there’s no scorecard. I’m stronger than I was, but I’m not unbreakable. I do break, and it may take an hour or it may take longer but I’ll get up again – and it’s rarely the way I like to envision myself - Rising from the Fire like a Phoenix. Instead, most of the time I’ll think I got out of bed – and I am strong!
Lizzie Stuhlreyer is the owner of Bee Attitudes, grappling with the true meaning of the messages behind her brand. We'd love to hear your stories behind the attitudes you wear - please message us at firstname.lastname@example.org.