I believed that they were my family. I believed that I was their son. I believed that I meant something to them. I believed their words. I believed who I was to them. I was more than just some guy brought into their family. I believed I was loved. I found importance there, and I found meaning.
I believed that they were my friends. I believed that they liked me. I believed that they laughed with me and at my jokes. I believed they saw something in me even if I had not yet seen it in myself. I believed they had faith, that their smiles were genuine, and that their friendship was based on who I was. I found peace there, and I found importance.
I believed that she was forever. I believed that the scars would heal, that I would be “fixed” and she would forever be there. I believed in the power of love even if I had no real idea of what love was, and I believed in the imminence of forgiveness even if I was uncertain of how to forgive. I believed she could make the pieces whole, and that the power I had found in the beauty of her smile would make the dream real and the nightmare over.
I believed that I was broken. I believed that I needed them to fix me. I believed in the guilt that I felt with every breath, and the surety of failure that was my constant companion. I believed I needed them to show me strength, to prove my value, and to make me something more than I felt I was.
Yes, I believed. I believed I was nothing. I believe I was something the ground would tread on. I believed in the darkness and I only dreamed of the light. I repeated the mantra of weakness as I gave others power over me. I abdicated the throne given to me at birth, and I let others control the kingdom of my life.
I believed in them because I did not believe in myself. I needed them because I did not know who I was. I feared being alone because I did not know the awesome company I keep in myself.
Now, in their absence, in their denial, in their outright rejection I find a beautiful sunrise. I find health. I find peace. I find a strength unimaginable yesterday. I realize they are not gods, and that it is patently unfair to expect others to give me what I cannot give to myself.
Most of all, I find a love for me. I find a joy in being with me, and I find those things make me able to love those in my life without need for definitions, of roles, and of a commitment that neither feels right nor feels necessary. I find the power to be honest not only with those in my life, but with myself. I find a great acceptance of my flaws, of my strengths and of my humanness. I find my center easily because my focus is not diverted out there.
And I am happy. For the first time in my life I feel truly happy.
So, in some respects I am grateful their words were meaningless and their devotion unreal. I am grateful for the tremendous loss that has brought me here. “For I once was lost, but now am found, was blind but now I see.” I am happy to have sunk to the bedrock of my life so that I could find the truth there. I am grateful for the climb out of the pit, and for the fact that she was nothing more than a hollow promise that did not exist outside of a fantasy. I needed the loss, and I needed the pain in order to discover something far greater than I have ever known in my life.
So, in letting go I have found nothing to hold on to. I have found surety in the bedrock on which I once stood that showed me the beauty around me. The hug of my children. The truth in their words that come in the hallowed words “Daddy, I love you.” The ability to stand up for my truth regardless of what others would say or do. The indescribable feeling of sitting with my children in a “family sandwich” telling silly jokes until we simply can’t think of another word to say. Then we are still, as if on cue, the three of us simply listening to whatever direction the Universe sends us in. We can find great joy in our sandwich, and we can find great joy in our aloneness because we are not defined by any of it.
I have discovered that I am whole, and that I am a perfect being even in my imperfectness. I need not be fixed for there is nothing broken. Yes, I laugh out loud at the thought that I needed anyone to be fixed. Now my choices are mine and mine alone. I no longer need have faith in anyone even though I have found faith in many. I no longer need pretend and fake a smile in the storm of false accusations and innuendo. Let them throw their stones, for my choice is to smile purely into the heart of their anger and speak my own truth regardless of what they do.
There is love here…much love, and it is now directed in the right place. Yes, there is great promise here.