Barbara Govednik


Barbara Govednik, Writer

There is a thing – one, beautiful thing – that both tops my 2010 To Do list and completes it. It is simply To Be.

It’s evocative of Shakespeare, I know. Will and I were born on the same day 400 years apart, so maybe we are destined to express ourselves using similar words. But my version is without the alarming follow up of “or not to be.” There is no question in that regard.  Relax.

My “To Be” is steeped in a desire for authenticity, freedom and, perhaps, relief. My fondest wish for 2010 is to simply be who I am without putting up all the arguments against myself that have become second nature. There is decent evidence from credible sources, evidence that I have been discounting for years, that who I am right this second is completely acceptable.

And so my To Do list is a To Be list. To be that person my husband adores, the person he still adores after all these years.  To be that person my friends admire and enjoying hanging out with. All of them are drawn to a part of me that I don’t readily recognize, that is nothing like the ramshackle, slightly askew fixer-upper I have always assumed I am.

But these people I surround myself with are not a hallucinatory lot. The things they see and accept in me – good, bad or indifferent – are there. So 2010 is for cleaning off the smudgy glasses that blind me to the qualities I possess that people seem to love. It may take a bit of time. 

Barbara Govednik is a Chicago-based writer, writing coach, communication consultant and board member of the Neighborhood Writing Alliance. Her husband and friends think she’s awesome. She’s trying not to argue with them.

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