The journey of finding yourself is not

all that social media has it cracked up to be.

It’s not gallivanting around Europe

in a pair of Toms

taking photos in mosques and on mountains

with beautiful people

seeing beautiful things

eating beautiful food.

It’s a cycle of

I hate myself, I love myself

I hate myself for loving myself

and I love myself just to hate something else.

It’s searching in the bottom of a bottle

of tequila for the answers to an aching soul

that yearns for more than a floral centerpiece

and a 9-5.

Those lonely nights when you can’t stand yourself

another minute so you peruse

the home décor isle of Wal-Mart

at 3 a.m. dreaming of what could be

what should be.

Losing yourself makes you feel so small

like your insides might cave in on themselves

and your entire being will be erased

in an instant because you couldn’t

raise your voice above the crowd.

Finding yourself is big.

It makes you feel like you could engulf

an entire room with your laugh

or crush mountains with your sorrow

or create universes with your love

because you can and you will.

Finding yourself is falling in love with a dozen people

because they remind you what you are capable of

and falling in love with yourself because of what you are capable of.

I am capable of oceans of emotions

and of making others feel those emotions

and of detaching myself from whatever doesn’t

make me feel the enormous weight of the

galaxies inside myself.

I have found myself in the places I do not belong

and in the places I want to be,

where I see myself going,

and in the power of not underestimating the sheer force

of my existence.