I told the world that I was molested and then I went and cleaned the toilet.

While it wasn’t something that I’ve been hiding, it was a story that I would tell privately. My family knows, I’ve shared it with a handful of friends, past partners and dear clients but being molested when I was a kid wasn’t a story I was telling on stage or writing about in a book.

For the longest time, I wasn’t sure why I wasn’t sharing–in someways I didn’t want what happened in childhood to be the only thing that people saw when they looked at me. I didn’t want my experience to become the story that I told over and over again or seen as a person who talks about owning your power “just because” I was molested. Sometimes, I didn’t tell my story publicly because “it could have been so much worse” and at the worst of times, my narrative was that I “should just get over it already.”

And then I decided to write a book about self-acceptance and then my life as I had built it imploded and then I had to do some really deep healing and soul searching. Because that’s how life works sometimes. When you tell the universe, “I want to write a book about self-acceptance,” it has a tendency to blow the lid off of all the things about yourself that you’ve been hiding, or secretly judging about yourself. And then you have to deal with them–correction: and then you get to deal with them.

And I’m still healing and I’m coming to a place that I accept that I might always be healing, and that’s ok.

So, a few days ago, I had a life situation come up and despite communicating and trying to express how I felt. I didn’t feel heard. I felt small and unimportant. I felt like what I wanted didn’t matter. I felt like I didn’t matter. In a matter of minutes, I didn’t feel like I was a 39 year old woman. Instead I felt like a small, scared 5 year old. A child who was being hurt, who wanted it to stop and was made to feel like what I wanted didn’t matter.

More than 3 decades of feelings rushed through me, I felt like I went backward in time. I felt pissed that all these years later I could still be triggered. But then I sat still within myself. I remembered who I am now. I remembered that I’ve been doing a ton of work on myself and my own pathway to accepting myself.

It was as if a cork finally popped and all the things that I’ve been holding back and hiding–all the things I’ve tried to keep shoved in the closet, hidden out of sight, always showing up with a big bow tied and a smile that “everything is fine” came rushing to the surface. I was done.

I was done people pleasing. I was tired of staying quiet just to make other people feel happy. I was tired of hiding and holding back. So, I decided that this time, instead of feeling small, I would say “f*ck that” and stand up for myself.

Something about the pop of the cork felt like an opening of the floodgates. There was something about that moment of standing up for myself that made me feel like I was ready to step into the light. Shame lives in the dark, it can’t live in the light.

Emboldened, I opened up my phone and made a video to tell my story. At first, I was going to make a Facebook Live but then I worried that I would have a vulnerability hangover the next day. So I recorded the video and when it was time to post it, I chickened out. I made myself busy again so that I didn’t have “time to be seen,” so I hid again. That was my narrative and one that I knew very well.

This morning, instead of feeling the hungover, I felt ready. I didn’t want another day to go by that I would be hiding, so I made an Instastory to tell my story, and then I posted my longer video on Facebook. I told my story.

And then I cleaned the toilet. While that sounds funny, that’s what happened. I shared my truth, I set myself free and then life kept moving forward as it does. Life still needed to happen, lunch still needed to be packed, breakfast still needed to be made, and the toilet still needed to be cleaned.

It wasn’t that I was shrinking my big moment, it was that both things are true. I can have a big revelation that sets me free and makes me feel alive and whole and I can tend to my normal life.

To be honest, I’m curious to see what happens next. There’s just something about sharing your truth and fully living into who you are that makes you feel alive, it makes you feel a bit invincible, and truthfully it makes you ask yourself, “If I can do this, what else can I do next?”

I’d love to hear from you–do you have a truth or story that you’ve kept buried within you? What holds you back from sharing your story?