Tag Archive | vulnerability

It Matters

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Fear. It always seems to pop up in my life when I am not prepared for it.

At first, when it shows up, like an unwelcome house guest knocking at my door,  I get irritated.

But, I go to the door anyway to see what it wants. Well, to be truthful, sometimes I let the knocking go on for awhile, hoping it will go away. It never does. Fear is persistent.

That’s because fear always shows up when it’s message is about something that matters.

So eventually,  I get tired of the knocking and go to the door.

“Yes? What do you want?” I ask Fear.

And Fear proceeds to tell me what matters. Fear reminds me that there is something important in my life that I need to deal with.

I  close the door and take a deep breath.

There is another knock.

I open the door cautiously, concerned that Fear is returning to give me more to think about.

I am delighted to see Courage show up at my door!

“Remember me?” Courage says. “I’m always here. You just forget to let me in sometimes. ”

I  swing the door wide open and let Courage in. And right behind Courage comes Faith and Joy, along for the ride.

I got this. Even if it hurts, it’s because it matters. I have all I need. I got this.

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More chapters to my story

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It’s taken me years to come to terms with the harsh reality of what my marriage actually was. I was so young, trusting, and naive when I met him. I thought I had faced the worst of it, though. I felt like I had gotten past those sneaky little thoughts of denial that kept wanting to creep in and convince me that it really wasn’t so bad and he really was the good man I wanted to believe he was.

But….then my kids continue to share things with me. As adults now, they have been free to make their own choices regarding their relationship with their dad. I have watched as first one son cut off contact with his dad. As he shared memories with me of his experiences with his dad, I was devastated and horrified and supported his decision.  I felt horrible about having missed so much and choosing to not see some of the rest. I apologized profusely to him and worked through my own guilt. Then, my oldest son, through attending counselling also came to a decision to cut off contact with his dad. Although his experiences and memories were not as severe as his brother’s, they were still horrible. Again, I supported my son’s decision and worked through my guilt. My daughter is still on her own journey regarding this. 

Tonight, one of my kids told me more. I’m so glad he felt brave and strong enough to talk to me, and trusts me enough to do so. But, I am devastated all over again.  How could I have missed so much? How did I not see? I wish I could have protected them! I  wish I had known and seen! I feel that I failed my precious kids.

Yet, I also remember considering leaving….several times over the years. I knew that would mean unsupervised visitation and I  knew enough to feel scared of that for my kids. I always felt I needed to be the buffer in their world.  I dedicated over 20 years of my life to being just that.

Oh how easily I could sink into despair.  I can’t.  I can’t change the past.  I made the choices I did believing them to be best with what I knew at the time. But, the guilt….oh the guilt is so hard!

I have to keep loving myself through this part of my story too….I choose to own every part of my story,  including new chapters. My kids have been through enough. They don’t need me to fall apart.  They need me to model how to own my story and love myself through it….no matter what.

I pray for the strength to do that for them.

Letting Go

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I find letting go to be a challenge!

I know that I am a deep thinker and deep feeler.  I have a tendency to process my emotions and my thoughts at great length and for a long time. I think this is because of the high standards I tend to hold myself to and my continuous desire to improve myself.

But, this is often not helpful.  It holds me back from embracing what the present moment has to offer. It holds me back from becoming all I am meant to be.

My goal is to let go. My goal is to embrace the now. My goal is to become.

What is past is past.  I can’t change anything that happened to cause me pain….whether inflicted by others or by myself. It’s done.

Right now holds opportunities and possibilities.  Nothing will be perfect, including myself. But, much can be good. There is so much good to look forward to.

There are new possibilities in my life. It is exciting.  It is scary.  It is supposed to be both.

I am letting go of the past so that I am free to see what those possibilities may bring.  Whatever that may be, I can handle it. If there is anything I have learned,  it’s that I can handle it.

Always Vulnerable, Still Brave

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For some reason , I think I was hoping that the more I understood and embraced the importance of vulnerability in my life, I wouldn’t have to keep facing it so much.

Wrong! I am chuckling a bit at myself about this.

The truth is, vulnerability is ever present if we choose to be in any relationships at all. It is inescapable.  Unless we want shallow relationships with very limited intimacy, it is just part of the deal. Being close to someone makes us vulnerable.

It’s interesting how many people have said to me that they don’t know how I can put myself out there on the dating world.  The truth is, it’s been so good for me. It has created so much personal growth for me to keep facing vulnerability over and over and over again.

Yes, it’s hard. But, the courage it takes to keep going, learning, and growing is worth it to me.

Overcoming Fear

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It’s time.

Fear has had a hold on me for too long.

I wasn’t even aware how strong that hold was until now.

All around me there is suffering.  Illness, broken relationships, strained relationships, unhealthy choices, people hurting.

It seems everyone around me is hurting right now. I  have been praying every day for so many loved ones….and the list is growing.

It could easily fill me with fear.

Love often leads to loss. Actually, it always does. Even in relationships that don’t end, no one lives forever.  Loss is inevitable.

But, I don’t want to miss out on loving the amazing people in my life while I am blessed to have them. I don’t want to be closed to new people to love if they are  meant to bless my life…even if through a painful lesson.

No more fear.

This is going to be hard.

I need to trust.

Trust God. Trust myself. Trust others.

Vulnerability.

It always comes back to vulnerability.

Sigh.

It is the only way.

Here I go…

Courageous

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I must admit, I am getting tired of this particular courage.

But, what is the alternative?  It would be to hide, to avoid,  to never love again.  That is not who I am.

So, I will keep being brave. And when I am being hurt again, I will  let go….again.

Maybe one day there will be a risk that is worth it. Maybe not. I just know I can’t live without taking those risks. It’s who I am.

Just Present

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I just came back from a weekend away with the women in my book club. I am reflecting on how good the weekend was for me in so many ways.

There is just something about the company of women that is so very good for the heart and soul of other women.  We understand each other and instinctively know when to hug each other, cry together, laugh over ridiculous things, or just be present.

Just. Be. Present.

That is the most powerful thing we do for one another.

We listen. We make eye contact. We put our phones down. We are there.

I am blessed to know some amazing, strong, intelligent, and compassionate women. I am blessed by their presence in my life.

I feel strengthened and filled by their loving presence.

What a gift!