I’m writing early today because my mother is sick. She’s sicker than she’s letting on, and so I will be going to spend time with her today and perhaps, stay the night.
It is interesting, this inclination to drop everything (well, almost everything) and go and care for my mother when she needs me. This after several years of keeping my distance.
As my mother approaches death (which I don’t expect to be soon, but is inevitable), I find my reasons for keeping my distance are still valid, but they don’t matter so much anymore. I find myself overlooking a lot, understanding a lot, forgiving a lot. And, I feel my forgiveness has been rewarded—even though nothing has been said explicitly.
One of my biggest gifts is the ability to provide presence. This is a talent, but a talent I have cultivated and learned how to use. Therefore, I can make myself very present to someone or, on the other hand, make my absence powerfully felt. I am finding that as I make my presence felt with my mother that she senses this openness on my part, some vulnerability, and she seems less likely or quick to exploit that vulnerability as she has in the past. Trying to put things in a positive light, I think that she feared my potential for vulnerability and worried that it might cause me harm in what she perceives to be a rough and dangerous world. Well, the world may be rough and dangerous, but I choose to be vulnerable at certain times so that I can exercise my gift of giving non-judgmental presence.
I choose to love, to the extent that I can.
And that doesn’t erase the past, it doesn’t make the wounds go away, it doesn’t make me forget, but it makes me strong enough to face all of those things and choose to be vulnerable anyway. To choose to love anyway.
And when I have difficulty doing this—as I often do—I pray that God will pick up where my strength falters and allow love to flow through me in spite of myself. Sometimes it works. Sometimes it happens. And often I fail.
But I am glad for this opportunity to provide love to someone who loved me—however imperfectly (as we all love imperfectly).
I just need to remember always that the love doesn’t come from me alone. If it did, I wouldn’t be able to sustain my vulnerability. I would close up. So, I need to remember that for me, the love comes from God, the example of Jesus, and the community of people with good energy I am increasingly surrounding myself with. And, even you who read my words and give me your support. You are part of my loving community, and I thank you for it.
If you pray, please pray that I can be present to my mother—and to the world—in a way that is loving and healing. Please pray that I remember to cultivate my awareness of being connected to the loving energy of the source of my being. And pray that I may always be grateful for these opportunities to be present, to heal (others and myself), and to love.
Thank you for your time and attention.
I’d love to know your thoughts on what you’ve read.
Please comment, below, or email me at email@example.com.
May God richly bless you on your journey.