If I could stand in the street and wait, wait for anyone to come up to me and ask what is the meaning of life, I would say to them, the meaning of life is that you matter. You matter in this world. Your presence is important. I see you. You belong here. You belong.
I have felt lost most of my life. I tried to fit in with my biological family, my childhood friends, my jobs, my goals in this world. I have pretended and gone along with other’s goals and other ideas of success. I have always come up short. I have always been left wondering what’s wrong with me. I have always felt lost.
I have spent so much time denying. I deny my inner experiences. I deny my intuition. I deny my differences. I deny my trauma because it didn’t fit in with the world around me. I deny my illness because of inconvenience. I deny my fear because it’s not pretty. I deny my grief because it’s too huge.
In my process of reparenting myself, I am my father easing back in his recliner with me on his lap and I hear him saying to me how proud of me he is. He sees me growing in this world. I have a place in our family. I have a place in life. I grow into knowing me more just by moving through life. I’ll be fine. He will always be connected with me whether he is in person or moved on in spirit. I watch. I listen. I soak in his support.
I am my mother, sitting at her place at the table sipping her coffee with that type of nondairy creamer she likes. My cigarette is not lit. As I fiddle with my saucer, I have something important to say. I look up into my eyes and say, every day I learn something about myself as I watch you grow and change. You embody wisdom and I have had the privilege of being a witness. I am proud of you. You will do well on this earth, though there are hard times. I love to hear you laugh. I trust your wisdom and enjoy our time together while I am here in body and will be supporting you when I’m in spirit. Life is full of ups and downs. I’ll be with you on the ride until we meet again.
I matter. I belong. I am loved.
I imagine myself now as an elder, sitting in the upholstered chair in my childhood living room. I see all the books on the wall to my right. The TV is off. Out the window I see my yard and the fence where my best friend, Betsy, my horse, used to live. I am present here now. I look in front of me and sitting on my Grandma’s stool is me at the age of 6. I can see she’s scared. I can see she knows she is supposed to sit here and will comply but is lost. I can see she is not in her body. She is hiding.
I smile. I can see my reflection in the TV screen with my white hair. I have my slippers on. I am comfortable and trusting. I lean forward and say I’m so glad you’re here today. I am so happy to see you. I want you to know you are not alone in this world, in your life, in your days and night times. I am with you. I am you grown up. I remember what it feels like to be your age and it’s terrifying. You feel a lot of things and it’s scary. I want you to know, you are special. You belong in this family. You belong in your body. You belong.
You have special gifts that are experienced by feeling so much it is overwhelming. It is okay. You will grow into them. You will have times of confusion. You will have times of fear. I want you to remember you are never alone. I am with you. Every experience you have whether it’s good or bad is helping you. Even though Universal Love is invisible, it is everywhere around you, around everyone and everything in this world. You are a part of this world. I want you to look into my eyes and remember to talk to me. Tell me your thoughts. I am listening. I am here. I will remind you if I don’t hear from you. I am at your side. We live this life together. Now go have fun.
It’s funny. I have memories of hearing I am special in times of utter despair. Was it me talking to me? My heart is full. I feel wisdom around me. I am not alone. I belong in this world. I have memories of pain and loss and confusion. I hold those memories with a knowing I learned something from each incident, and I won’t know all the details until I am into my next world where I can review my life and get all the answers to my wondering. I will understand. I will accept the arc of my life and know I am here for a reason. I am loved. I belong.
“To feel as if you belong is one of the great triumphs of human existence — and especially to sustain a life of belonging and to invite others into that… But it’s interesting to think that … our sense of slight woundedness around not belonging is actually one of our core competencies; that though the crow is just itself and the stone is just itself and the mountain is just itself, and the cloud, and the sky is just itself — we are the one part of creation that knows what it’s like to live in exile, and that the ability to turn your face towards home is one of the great human endeavors and the great human stories.
It’s interesting to think that no matter how far you are from yourself, no matter how exiled you feel from your contribution to the rest of the world or to society — that, as a human being, all you have to do is enumerate exactly the way you don’t feel at home in the world — to say exactly how you don’t belong — and the moment you’ve uttered the exact dimensionality of your exile, you’re already taking the path back to the way, back to the place you should be.
You’re already on your way home.
Thank you so much. That was the most phenomenal reading. Each seems incredible but that blew me away. I am stunned by it. You did two things in that. First, you totally described the process of reparenting yourself so that there is a loving parent present with your inner child. That was so beautiful. Secondly, you captured that notion of time traveling, of putting yourself back as an adult into the past and change the memories. I did that through hypnotherapy and every time I go back to a painful memory, I always see my adult presence there now so that the memory is not so painful anymore. You described the process just perfectly. It was beautiful. I am grateful. Thank you so much.
I too found that reading just phenomenal. It was very wide and very deep. I don’t have a lot of words for the experience I had, except it brought me into my inner core. It was almost like going into the Grand Canyon with how deep it was, but it was like rays of light went into there. And in that light, it was a very healing experience to realize the true belonging is the belonging when we come home to our own selves and nurture in that way. It was amazing. Thank you for that gift. I needed it today. Thank you.
Thank you and thank you for the other sharing. This is a powerful morning, for sure. You brought back for me, a time in 2001 when I was on a pilgrimage and I had had a nightmare. I talked to the leader who asked me ‘do you know your core wound?’ I did not know my core wound. My life was following a script that I thought would work for me. She told me to read The Wounded Healer by Henry Nouwen. When I returned home, I found the book on my bookshelves. In it, he said the core wound is a universal wounding. You said it. That helps me in my connectedness. I appreciate you naming that. It helps us heal one another when we recognize that. I keep telling myself ‘you know you are loved, look at your friends, your needs are met.’ But that is in the head. But that core, core place, it’s good to know that it is shared. So thank you.
Thank you. That was gentle and soothing as always. My experience was compounded today with having a reading earlier and my mother-in-law came through and the message was that it’s so much simpler to heal than I make it. I can cleanse, and dip in. I want to complicate it. During the meditation, what stuck with me was you sitting in the chair and soothing the child. And I thought, who would I want to be sitting in that chair looking at me in all my vulnerabilities right now, whether I’m 60 or 4. What came to me was a council of my in-laws and all four of my grandparents. I saw them sitting there and I could see the gifts they were each bringing to me to help me in what I am doing right now. And just in that imagery, knowing there is a universal love out there and I can create a form for it with an intention for my soothing. Thank you for that vision.
I am with each one of you when you sign on in the morning and when you leave. I read your messages. I feel your hands on your hearts. It’s an incredible feeling to be part of community and to be present. To know you are each in your human bodies living your lives. It’s an amazing experience. Thank you for being part of this community and for your willingness to share.
It was amazing. I remember reading a book that struck me when it said, ‘children that grow up in an abusive home often feel different and alone.’ Now, with what you are saying, there are other facets as well. Maybe that’s why I feel so different and don’t belong. I connect with a few people through the heart even if they don’t have the same beliefs that I do. It’s important to me and it’s who I am. I also think more and more about being so sensitive to nature and animals and people, how that could make one feel a little bit different. I do feel so lonely all the time, especially in this quest to help my son. I was thinking back about my childhood. It’s too painful, I can’t go there now, but when you talked about putting the person in front of you, I thought of my dear sweet friend, I could put her there because she was so gentle. Thank you.
That’s who you sit with, that’s who you bring in. No one else is allowed, only her, for comfort.
Thank you. It was amazing. I walked with my mother. It brought for me my mom. The ability for us to breathe together. One of the things I thought was that my mother never had this kind of group. The way she grew up, people around her didn’t allow that. So the parts of me that she’s passed on I treasure, but I also don’t own all of them. I can choose what I want to own. She was in my heart because she was brilliant and she could do what she could do with what she had. If she could only have had the backup wisdom that we can sit with here this morning, just to breathe together, is amazing. Thank you.
I like to think she is experiencing this through you.
Thank you. Thank you for being on this journey with me. It’s quite a journey, all these hundreds of days. Each day, it’s amazing. A memory can change a life. An experience that can take a moment can change a perspective. It’s all at our fingertips as we allow ourselves to gentle ourselves into experiencing it. I wish you all well. I hope you have a gentle day with kindness to yourselves.