This past weekend, the people of South Sudan celebrated their first ever Independence Day. After years of civil strife, violence and years of devastating war, citizens of the world’s newest country took a moment in the midst of continues hardship and tense relations with their northern neighbors to reflect on how far they had come.

Reading through the coverage, there was much to marvel at- after all, this journey has been steeped in blood, pain and build on the backs of thousands who have been killed, raped and left behind. But the line that stood out most to me was from a proverb uttered by several people in the inaugural crowd.

“Where there is nothing left to lose, there is nothing left to fear.”

Thinking about that I had to think about the perspective behind that proverb for the people who have lived and lost through war. And it humbles me to think how much we harbor fear even in time of peace in our personal lived and how connected those fears are to our things.

In today’s world, it’s hard not to go a week without hearing someone talk about detoxing. Whether it’s letting go of carbs and replacing it with cayenne pepper mixes or letting go of negative people, we live in a culture that I obsessed with finding new things to let go of. It’s an edit process: get rid of this, get one step closer. But I wonder, get one step closer to what?

No matter how we all chose to phrase it, the reality is we are all trying to getting back to the stripped down version of us. And the truth is, it’s because deep down inside we all long to be closest to who we were without all the added parts. Regardless of our personality, our backgrounds our story, we all know we are at our best when we are closest to our core, our independence.

Today, celebrate in who you are standing alone. Remember your journey to this moment and with no fear, continue on.

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