The Truth About Ourselves

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During the past 18 months I have learned that sometimes navigating the truth about myself takes me through deep, muddy waters that leaves my soul chilled to the bone. But the wonderful thing is that I can change, if I so choose; all the while knowing that meaningful change takes time. For change is a process, we cannot rush it, and it will happen in its own time.

There is a beautiful prayer I once heard written by a Benedictine nun which goes something like this: “Dear God, show me the truth about myself no matter how beautiful it is.”

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And it is really true that there is beauty in who we are and what we do even if we fail to recognize it. Sometimes it is buried deep and you need a bulldozer to dig it out. Sometimes that beauty sits on the surface of our souls. And sometimes we just have to let a little bit of light in to let it reflect all the amazing facets of our personalities that are like a diamond which shines and dances across the room. Most importantly, we don’t need someone else to validate this beauty in us. It is there for us to enjoy alone if that is what we please.

We can see ourselves as even more beautiful through our own eyes when we view our own truths about ourselves and acknowledge those truths.  Some of those truths will be transitory while others occupy a more permanent place on our journey but the most important thing is to grant ourselves grace while moving forward with eyes and heart wide open and refusing to punish ourselves any further for those times in life when we just didn’t know or do better. We are all imperfect and it is a waste of time to cling to “what was” instead of trying to make “what is” even better.

So with this in mind, today, as I go about these minutes that are granted to me; I will try to be kind to myself because if I can’t even grant that simple thing to myself how can I expect to be kind to others?  I will also try to bring myself into, and be mindful of the present moments that I am witness to, knowing that things are the way they are suppose to be right at this moment in time. And I will bask in these moments of newfound acceptance knowing all the while that change takes time and I am doing the best I can right now to find greater peace and understanding through the transformation that it occurring deep in my soul.

I will be patient.

Trying to Maintain Dignity & Grace

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Its hard. No doubt about it. When you feel so wounded and so hurt not to lash out. Not to want to say “Stop being an asshole!” over and over again. To not to want to destroy or implode the last vestiges of your relationship or something that is meaningful to the two of you.

It would be very easy for me to get in a “bad” place very quickly right now. A place I would not be proud of in the future. But I know that it would only serve to heap more shame, guilt and sadness on a plate that is already filled to the brim with it. So instead, I am trying to focus on acting with intentional dignity and grace. I am trying to use words that embody dignity and grace. I am trying to act in ways that show my love for myself, my family and B being mindful to incorporate these ideas into my actions. For instance, a small petty way was when B gave me a chocolate bunny for Easter yesterday and instead of taking a hammer to that damn 5,000 calorie creature I thanked him. So while my thoughts may not always be inline with my thinking regarding dignity and grace I am trying to  be mindful and change them too. Thanking instead of hammering. Acting elegant instead of spiteful.

I am trying desperately to remember that no matter what happens with this relationship, the truth is that ugliness, bitterness and anger will do nothing for anyone. And it won’t make me a better person. More importantly it will not make me feel better about who I am and will certainly steer me away from the person I have been trying to become. A more peaceful person. A happier person. A person who loves what is in front of her and not wishing for something more.

So even though B may not see a future together and even if there is no future to see I have to believe if I act with dignity and grace then it will allow the good stuff to come to me and to be seen by me. And that is what I need right now and in the future. I want to be mindful and happy with myself and I want to minimize regrets. I want to see the beauty that is all around me. I want to feel the softness of soft feelings and actions even though things feel angular and hard right now. I want my heart to be open to possibilities so that I can make decisions out of love for myself and not out of anger and confusion.

Dignity and Grace. In fact, I like them so much that I might just go get a tat. I have never had one and could never find anything that I would like enough to permanently place on my body. But maybe these are the most important things for me to remember especially now. Dignity and Grace.  They are my new mantras and just maybe my new ink.

 

Granting Grace…337 Days to Fix This

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Several years ago I was in a car accident and it was entirely my fault. I rear-ended a man and as soon as it happened all the sticky scenarios of what might happen began to run through my head. I immediately worried about what the driver might say/do or if this fender bender would end up in court and how severe his whip-lash would prove to be. Instead, he stepped over to my car, asked how I was, looked at his car and said, “Looks like nothing is hurt. Have a good day” and drove off. I was stunned and it occurred to me that I may not have acted as well had it been me who had been rear-ended. The grace the man showed to me that day was given with sincerity and in a spirit of love. I was grateful for it.

Lately I have been thinking a lot about the concept of granting grace and realize that I do not do it very well. Yesterday’s incident with Paul is a good example. He was acting like a teenage jerk and had painted himself in a corner with his bad attitude. It ended up that he gave me his telephone after I reminded him that he had a phone so I could talk to him at all times, so I could speak to him when I needed to. “Well, if you are going to make all these ridiculous contact rules I don’t even want the phone,” were his last words before it became mine.

The concept of granting grace within my interactions with the important people in my life is problematic. I wish it wasn’t. I want to be right (unfortunately) ALWAYS. I want my children acting respectful.ALWAYS. And with these types of notions of mine granting grace often becomes difficult. But really, in its most sincere form, granting grace is as simple as holding each other accountable for creating a safe environment where people can speak up without being fearful of repercussions and being committed to their success especially in those areas that are problematic for them. It is also being patient with yourself so you can grant that same patience and grace to your loved one.

And so as I go about my day today I am going to actively search for ways to grant grace to those around me. I hope others will do the same for me because I need some grace sent my way. Desperately.