All the Pretty Pieces?

iStock_000027728102Medium - stone angelFor years I’ve struggled… desperately attempting to hide all of the bits and pieces of me that are tarnished and bruised, shattered and torn, worn out and pulverized. We all have them; the components of ourselves we don’t want anyone else to know about let alone to see.

My goal has always been to be the best version of myself. Yes, being my best self is noble, but not so much if my interpretation of my best is perfection. Yes, futile. I know now.  As misguided as my desire to hide my flaws may have been, it was my way  for much of my life.

iStock_000027728074Medium - stone angelLast weekend I attended a “Heaven is For Real” Ministries tour held at a local church. Todd and Sonja Burpo spoke about their son’s experiences in heaven when he was four years old. I read, “Heaven is For Real” last year in just a matter of hours, so I was super excited for the opportunity to listen to them speak in person. Colton even attended. He is now a freshman in high school. Wow, ten years later and he is traveling the world as a teenager… telling his story of meeting God and His angels.

The book is PHENOMENAL and I cannot wait for the movie release on April 16 (movie trailer:

During the two hour worship service filled with music and stories, there was a singular sentence that resonated with me, “We all carry broken pieces.”  WOW. Here on stage was Todd, a pastor, admitting to his faults. He told us about his dark moments and for whatever reason I not only HEARD what he said, but I FELT what he said in the core of my being.

Five simple words spoke volumes…

iStock_000027727638Medium - stone angelWhen friends are miserable my inclination is to help them mend their broken pieces, but truthfully I haven’t been able to repair most of my own. Honestly, how can you heal anything you ignore or hide away? But, maybe, we’re not supposed to “fix” them anyway… simply carry them. Accept them? Forgive ourselves? Forgive others? I wish I knew for sure.

How heavy my burden had become over the years; it takes a hell of a lot of time and energy to be my BEST all the damn time. All this nonsense about being perfect has held me back in many aspects of my life – most importantly in matters of the heart. Can’t tell you how many men I’ve dated who only met “BRAND NEW” Renae. Lord knows I wasn’t brave enough to show anyone the real me. Who would love someone so broken? It made considerable sense to me to hide all the fractured parts of myself.

iStock_000027727620Medium - angelRecently a friend was going through a really tough time. He wasn’t sure if his twelve year love affair would persevere. Over coffee he kept telling me how broken the relationship was and had been for a matter of time. Of course when a loved one is hurting, we all want to say or do just the right thing to ease his/her pain.

Without a thought I blurted, “Sure you had a very expensive vase you loved. It was shiny and pretty. It is now shattered. Okay. Well, now you get to decide if you’re going to sweep up all the fragments and trash it or perhaps, just maybe, you can create yourself a pretty decoupage mosaic table. The vase was fragile. The table is both beautiful and durable. Together you have the chance to construct the table to meet both of your needs.”

iStock_000027727593Medium - stone angelFor the last few years, instead of hiding my mangled pieces, I’ve tried laying “all the pretty pieces” out for everyone to see. Starting Candy Coated Reality in 2011 was the catalyst for this change in me. Writing continually allows me an outlet to share all the not so flattering portions of myself with the world. To me, this is a safe environment **smile** and I’m thankful everyone reading has been so supportive.

Sure, it was a challenge at first to proudly display my damaged pieces rather than cover everything up with smoke and mirrors. Perhaps, this way, in being my true, authentic self, I will find the guy with just the broken bits I need to fill in my holes and vice versa. We can build a beautiful table together; from the shattered we can build something stronger.

© Renae Rossman and Candy Coated Reality™

28 thoughts on “All the Pretty Pieces?

  1. Very well written post. All of us have those pesky broken pieces that just chip away daily. It’s how we pick up those pieces and put them away that makes us who we are. I can’t wait for that movie myself. It’s going to be great. Keep up the writing and keep putting those pieces in a beautiful mosaic that makes you happy with who you are.

    • Thank you!! So much!! Did you watch the movie? What did you think of it? I loved it!! Now I want to watch “Miracles From Heaven” by the same director. Very inspiring true stories!! I love seeing God’s work in our lives.

  2. I love what you’ve written here. It’s so eloquent and true. Thanks so much for sharing this story. I haven’t read the book but I’ve seen it. I may find myself in the bookstore tomorrow….

    • Thank you so much. My apologies my reply is TWO YEARS LATER!! What? Life has happened: fertility treatments, pregnancy, giving birth, and now being a busy, working, single mommy to a GORGEOUS little 18 month old Diva. Ha! Did you ever buy/read the book? Wishing you well.

  3. Great words! I’ve long said that more people need to be honest with themselves and potential partners in order to find happiness as a couple. So many folks I’ve known hide the parts of themselves they’re ashamed of, or afraid of, or simply don’t think is “good enough.” Then they find themselves trying to act perfect “or I’ll lose him”. How unfair is it to lie to the one you supposedly love about WHO you are? How can they love YOU if you don’t let them SEE you? I speak from the experience of having been married for five years to a man who seemed perfectly suited to me . . . until one day he said it was too hard to keep up the “character” he’d been playing and he just wanted to be himself. “Himself” wasn’t a bad guy . . . but he was NOT who I’d thought I’d married! If he’d been honest I probably wouldn’t have married him, but he wouldn’t have wasted five years of his life living a lie. Somewhere out there was a woman who would have been thrilled to be with the real him. And we’d all have been happier.

    • Yep. Truer words have never been written; you’re so right. For years… I hid myself from my mates… and then I look back and say, “No wonder the relationship ended. Duh.” Now, I am who I am… take me or leave me. We are all a work in progress. The trick is… to find a person who is willing to help you with the work and vice versa 🙂

  4. Wow. Just beautiful. This sentence resonated with me the most: “How heavy my burden had become over the years; it takes a hell of a lot of time and energy to be my BEST all the damn time.” Boy, is that the truth! I have done the same thing for years and it’s almost as if I was setting myself up for failure. Perfect is just too hard to achieve and while we may strive for it, I’m not sure we are meant to have it in this life.

    Thank you for this eye-opening post!


    Laurali Star

    • I’m so glad that resonated with you. I do believe we write about/teach what we most need to learn. I look back over my old posts as a reminder of who I used to be… who I want to be… and who I have become. Life is all about personal evolution. Wishing you well along your evolution 🙂 XO

  5. Being perfect is exhausting and unrealistic. Most people try this route and never find THEIR destination. A true person will find someone to love them “warts and all” and I assure you, it is the most wonderful experience in the world. Great post to remind everyone just to be yourself. You are perfect the way you are.

  6. Great Post///sometimes we have to go thru uncomfortable things to be comfortable in the end, I am so proud of you.

  7. There was a series I read on another blog over the weekend speaking to “the girl I was” and I thought hard about writing a piece to contribute… and then I realized that I didn’t have a lot of yearning for the girl I used to be because she was so very focused on trying to be perfect all the time. I’m happy to be {mostly} free from that feeling, to be closer to accepting all my own cracked pieces and appreciating the pretty mosaic they’re continuing to create. Thanks for sharing such a beautiful post!

    • It is a struggle, isn’t it? Sure, we want to be our best selves… it is great to strive for that… but to expect perfection is self defeating. Ugh. Every day, I remind myself of this simple fact. Silly, I had to remind myself, right? Awareness is the first step. Acceptance is the next… sometimes that is harder to accomplish 🙂 XO

  8. Thank you for visiting my blog and for liking my post about my Dad (“My Dad Needs Your Healing Light & Prayers Today). I am so grateful for the time you took out of your day to read it and think of him. He is doing better.

    I love your story. It is so difficult to expose ourselves. Authenticity is a rarity, a trait I prize most. To open up to the universe and let it see us bare; With no armor and nothing to protect us. It is very brave to face what we are, what we were and what we will become so openly and embrace all of it.

    Our journey is different, but much of what you have gone through, I have been there with you; I have lived it too. People who no longer pretend are fierce and rare. Some days I shrink and have the urge to hide again and even delete my blog, but then I remember I am not the same as I was-that I no longer believe in masks. I am sure I am not alone in having weak moments. Reading blogs like yours helps me to remain strong; we are so much stronger together.

    My blog, started at the beginning of February this year, has been the reawakening, the renewing, the remaking of me. I hid, so forgotten, that I did not recognize myself in the mirror. I started my blog to heal myself, but along the way I found I wanted to help others heal themselves-through compassion and empathy.

    Your path is inspiring and needed. I hope that you will continue to follow it bravely, and help others to face themselves. I am endeavoring to do the same along my own roads. I am glad that our two paths have met out here in the aether of WordPress.

    I just followed your blog and I am looking forward to reading more about you and the journey we both have ahead.

    Light and Blessings to you,


  9. Awesome post. Our greatest weakness can and does become our most prized strength. It might take time to realize it, but life does show us this through our experience. Thanks for posting this. Great timing for me.

  10. Pingback: Blogdom Feb. 26-Mar. 26, ’14 | The ToiBox of Words

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