A little over a year ago, I pre-ordered Untamed by Glennon Doyle; actually I pre-ordered several copies so I could give a few away as gifts. I could not wait to get my hands on this book. Her previous book Love warrior marked my soul (in the best of ways) and I knew Untamed had a message inside written just for me. Finally, the book arrived. It was beautiful; I was like a kid in a candy store. I sat down and read the prologue twice. Then I placed the book on a shelf and waited. My soul knew I wasn’t ready for it, just quiet yet.
For an entire year, I would pick it up and randomly pick a section and read a couple pages… then back to the shelf it would go. I would catch a glimpse of the book… it was calling me and I was not ready.
Fast forward to the day I decided to file for divorce- I sent for the book (side note, I decided to file for divorce while I was in Florida and my book was still in Indiana).
Three days later, my book arrived. Finally, it was time.
I opened the book… I allowed each word penetrate my heart.
I already knew the story of Tabitha, as I had listened to many podcast interviews about the book and I read bits and pieces of it throughout the year, but this time her (Tabitha's) story seemed like an echo of my own hearts cry. You can watch a cute animated version of Tabitha's story here.
The following is an excerpt of an interview with Glennon published by NPR:
"I had a simmering discontent inside of myself about my marriage, about my family, about my world, about my work and I was looking for a metaphor for it. I was at a safari park with my family and we went to the cheetah run. The zookeeper came out, holding the leash of a lab. And she said, is this the cheetah? And all the kids said, "no." She said, "you're right." This is Minnie the lab. We raised Minnie alongside Tabitha the cheetah in order to tame her. (Minnie ran along side of the truck chasing the dirty pink bunny to remind Tabitha of her role) Then we watched Tabitha chase a dirty pink bunny. I just watched that cheetah and thought, oh, if a cheetah can be tamed to forget who she is, to forget her wild, to forget her majesty, to forget her power and spend her entire life chasing dirty pink bunnies, then so can a woman."
There it is... I remembered what it was like to be Untamed; fully myself. I understood the fear of facing the words on the pages of this big beautiful book. I already knew the truth. I was pretending to be satisfied chasing dirty pink bunnies- allowing the world to define my identity... but deep down I knew I was a goddamn cheetah and wasn't made to be tamed by the Minnie's and the zookeepers of this world.
I felt like I was reading intimate pieces of my own life when Glennon described her relationship with her now ex husband. The way she described how they tried to come back from infidelity and the struggle she had mentally, emotionally, and physically was like she had unearthed the deep-rooted feelings I had been trying to ignore for more than five years. She describes a deep Knowing that quietly tells you the truth - even when you try to reject it. I had silenced my Knowing in an effort to keep my family intact. When women silence their Knowing everyone loses. I wasn't keeping my family intact by ignoring my Knowing, I was forcing them into survival mode in which we all just pushed forward, kept going, surviving, but never thriving.
“When women lose themselves, the world loses its way. We do not need more selfless women. What we need right now is more women who have detoxed themselves so completely from the world's expectations that they are full of nothing but themselves. What we need are women who are full of themselves. A woman who is full of herself knows and trusts herself enough to say and do what must be done. She lets the rest burn.” ― Glennon Doyle
In Untamed, Glennon asks women, "What is the truest, most beautiful story about your life that you can imagine?" I have asked women a variation of that question for years... but quietly silenced my truest, most beautiful story. As I read through this portion for the second time, I jotted a note about the truest, most beautiful life I could imagine for myself... it was a sad little list. At the time it was all I could muster to hope for. Thankfully, as I have continued to work on myself and through all of the stuff that comes through divorce... my list has grown - a lot. I'm in the process of editing my life to reflect someone ready to receive all of the things on that list- after all I am a goddamn cheetah (not a cougar- if you are in your twenties don't bother messaging me- gross).
Little Lessons Everywhere
Our soul always knows what we need and what we're not quiet ready for... listen. However, explore why you're not ready. I could have potentially missed out on a lot of pain if I would have been brave enough to open that book a year ago.
Cheetahs were not created to be tamed- neither were we.
Stop ignoring your Knowing.
I am currently stepping into alignment with the woman who is fully herself- who knows and trusts herself enough to say and do what must be done & lets the rest burn.
Because I'm still riding out my Trevor Hall obsession...
Fire On Your House
Get your copy of Untamed here...