Lea has been showing up online for over a decade creating a whole movement around being location independent. That was quite intimidating for me when we first met, given that my online presence was basically a personal Facebook account!!
We’ve been showing up together online under our LemonAid banner for two years now and it’s been a fascinating journey for us both.
So what have we learnt in that time both showing up there?
Firstly, while I (Becky) thought I shared personal stuff on Facebook I now realise how much I was actually hiding. From others and from myself. Coming out and starting to live a life that felt more ‘me’ made it easier to begin to talk more frankly. Everywhere.
Still work to be done in some areas though as I realise there is still shame attached to sharing the bits I’m still working through or stuck in. Not that we HAVE to share every detail or the bits that are still raw for us, but I have a gut feeling that being able to delve into some of the more tricky aspects would be interesting reading for others as well as hugely cathartic and a process of ‘letting go’, for me.
Which brings me on to the next lesson, catharsis. Writing, processing, reliving aspects of our own journeys has been and continues to be hugely cathartic for us, especially when people resonate with it and reach out.
We’ve also learnt not to judge ourselves by what others are getting done! The time pressures we experience fitting everything in with children, therapy, home educating, flexi-schooling, keeping our relationship well tended, leisure time, exercise, eating well can be a bloody big challenge.
Comparing ourselves to people without children or those whose children are at school five days a week is futile! Besides, our life presents us with much fodder for emotional growth, life lessons and thus things to share and discuss!
We are working at becoming more consistent even when we are weathering several storms at once. It also forces us to focus in the limited time we do have. Lea is really good at ensuring we still prioritise us and some leisure time, which left to me and my guilt-ridden ways would probably fall by the wayside somewhat!
We often feel worried that ‘Showing Up’ might be construed as ‘Showing Off’! This can lead to not sharing things that might be useful or of interest and also, dare I say it? Oh fuck it, I dare, what’s wrong with showing off??!!
Given that we share a fair amount of our fairly epic fails, downs, traumas, BUT EVEN IF WE DIDN’T, showing up is going to feature more! I’m going to call it ‘Celebrating The Good Shit’!
The final thing we’ve learnt – although I’m sure there’s plenty more that if it wasn’t 27℃ here in Brighton with a lack of aircon in the cafe I’m typing this in I might be able to think of – is that you’d be surprised who’s paying attention when you think no-one is paying attention!!
Sometimes it feels like you’re exposing yourself into a bottomless abyss, a void of nothingness and no-oneness, only to discover at some later date that people from your past, family, and random folk are reading your stuff, sometimes avidly!
We’ve learnt that people come to things in their own time if it’s right for them and our job is to keep on keeping on, telling our story, sharing our experience, and providing a space for people to join us/support us/work with us if it feels right for them.
Showing up anywhere, including online can be a daunting affair…
We’ve had criticism from previous friends for ‘daring’ to do it (“But what about your exes and how they feel about what you’re doing?”) as well as from our exes themselves who take the tiny snippets we share online, jump to (wrong) conclusions and then throw it all back at us in various arguments.
But I can tell you categorically, it feels a darn sight better than hiding – from ourselves, from others (whether that’s to rescue their feelings or protect ourselves), from the life we really want, from our fears.
And if other people have a problem with that as far as I’m concerned…when it’s their shit, they can clean it up! Here’s to showing up!!