Authentic... genuine... real... bona fide... being exactly what is claimed... trustworthy. I just love authentic people, don't you?? And on the flip side, I find myself disappointed by people who wear masks. Why disappointed? Because I know that somewhere underneath that mask lies a jewel of a woman waiting to let herself be known by someone, but scared to death to do so.

Authenticity does not come easy to those of us humans here on planet earth. We like to posture and pose, creating the image of ourselves that seems most palatable to whomever we meet. We put on the mask that best matches the circumstances. In a world that seems to applaud the phony and encourage the cover-up, I simply delight when I meet people who are determined to swim the other direction! Amen?

A strange thing is happening in my life. I've always had authentic friends; deep friends. With the announcement that we would be leaving the country, I assumed that there wouldn't be many new friends who would be willing to stick themselves out there for a person who wouldn't be around. God, though, has had other plans for me. In the past 6 months, I've met some amazing, authentic women who, for whatever reason, have no fear of being my friend :). It seems that I can't imagine my friendship circle without them in it now... what a complete surprise!

One more observation in the friendship area... as women we tend to congregate and socialize in groups of women our same age. I guess it is a comfort thing; maybe just embarrassment in some ways that the older of us are graying and sagging, while the younger of us are still learning the lessons that those gray hairs stand for. I don't know. Whatever it is, I encourage the very opposite. What, you say?

One of my very, very best friends is 15 years older than me. We started out working together 8+ years ago. She was one of my spiritual mentors, but somewhere along the line the age thing simply disappeared. We are just great friends now with little awareness of a generational difference.

And yesterday, I found that the same thing can happen with someone almost 15 years younger than me! How cool is that??

Authenticity is timeless beauty in my opinion ... if you're willing to peel the layers off and show yourself, God can and will surround you with like-minded women to fight through life with. As a woman whose 'authentic women list' is growing, I just say thanks... to God and to the ladies who choose to live life just the way God made them. Cheers!


Holly (me.) said…
Authenticity is risky; however, it seems to me entirely less stressful in the longrun than trying to maintain a fictional image.
Araratacres said…
AMEN! ...and ditto to all you said. I have never had a large circle of good friends, but those that are there are truly authentic.
WOW...Laura what you have written about it so incredibly true. I was talking to a girlfriend today and I was sharing what I have recently learned about "Fear of Man" vs. "Fear of God". (Thanks to you!)

I think that I too am learning the authenticity in people. Including myself. The freedom to be real and true to who you really's so light! It's a wonderful feeling to be able to trust people...even though yes sometimeS we can be burned, I believe that through prayer and faith we can overcome that pain of being "judged".

Thanks so much for being YOU and please know the impact and inspiration that you make on others!

Anonymous said…
Bravo, remarkable idea and is duly

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