I was always the 'lazy' one growing up. The messy room, the bad grades because I wouldn't 'apply myself'. Then I grew up to be the lazy one with the messy house.
Last night, as I was screenprinting t-shirt orders at 2 am, with sweat running down my back, knowing I had to get up and teach two classes in the morning at co-op, I thought 'Lazy. What a load of bullshit."
This label has followed me my whole life, and even though I don't believe it about myself, because I have seen what I have done and continue to do - it still wounded me.
People thought they could call me lazy, and it would make me suddenly want to be a more neat person.
Is it so bad that probably the worst thing people say about me is that my house isn't neat? I guess things could be worse. I've had chronic pain since I was 15, and that has always played a huge role in my tidiness or lack thereof. It took time for me to grow into the more driven person that I am now, after learning new skills, how to pace my productivity and put my energy into what I was really passionate about and called to do. A bit of success begets more success as you grow into self-confidence. And thankfully, I have kids who help with chores now.
My kids have flaws, and I am tempted to label them. The difficult one. The rebellious one. The messy one. The crybaby. I'm sure you do too. But I know how that feels, and I will not give them the lifelong burden of a label.