Thursday, August 7, 2014

a surprise visitor who changes everything

This morning has been really rough... on me... which is really silly considering I am so completely disgusted with the fact that my thoughts are most always and only concerned with my own wants and needs.
My friend's little boy was murdered yesterday and an entire community is grieving this loss; a man whom I loved like my own grandfather lost his life to cancer last Sunday, and an entire community is grieving that loss, I mourn the loss of the relationship I was involved in for over 2 years which ended a month ago, and most of our two families are also grieving this loss; I worry about the state of the nation, I feel regret for all of my loved ones I do not speak to daily, I am reminded of just about every pain I have ever felt... because I am selfish at my absolute core.
Maybe we all are, but this is clearly all about me.

So there I was, sitting on the curb talking on my phone to a friend, trying to give some experience, strength, and hope, praying for a way to start this day over, and a little kid comes riding by on his bicycle. A little kid with no shoes, and a big smile. He passes by once, and then [surprisingly] cuts a big circle and just pulls his bike up to where I am sitting. I'm a little put out. [I'm obviously on the phone, here, kid.]
But he just says to me, "Oh, you can go ahead and finish that call. It's ok, I'll wait."
Confused, and intrigued, I do just that. I tell my friend that some little human has suddenly appeared and that he obviously wants something from me... meanwhile this little bugger is putting up his kickstand and dismounting from his bicycle.
"Hi!" he says... "I just stopped by to say 'Hi'".
And he then proceeds to tell me all about his summer, and his dad's heart condition, and how his birthday is in 5 days, and how he really wants a surprise party like last year, but he's just trying to forget about that not to get his hopes up... and he just keeps talking...
So I ask him...
"What would you do if you had a friend who was sad and needed some cheering up?"
He says, "Well I am alone a lot, so I pretend imagination in my head. And I do this: [an adorable mixture of martial arts movements and sound effects]".
I immediately put out my hand to introduce myself to this wonderful child, and I find out his name is Sebastian, and he is 8 years old. And in this moment, he changed my whole world...

I stepped into the present moment. I had a conversation with an amazing little kid, and I felt grateful. I was praying for relief, and God brought Sebastian to my door to show me how it could be today. And so here I sit, still cognizant of all the loss that surrounds me, but so so so so grateful for what I DO have, and who I get to meet along the way...

Tuesday, August 5, 2014

peace when the day is done

the agony of loss is a cycle of flooding memories of all the times we shared; the times you took advantage of me, and the times you showed you cared. your voice on the telephone line speaking sorrow to my ears, telling me you apologize for the hurt caused over the years; and your promise, to your credit, to never do another girl the same, does make my heart hurt less, to know you feel the shame. How to not count this as failure, when I clearly see my wrongs, the good moments I will treasure, brought to mind with every country song. But I was not honest about my feelings, did not heed my inner voice; perhaps we could have made it, had I made a different choice. There is no fault or blame to lay, it happened, it is done, and the ups and downs of grieving feel like a battle I have won. I know many things I knew not before, am stronger, more resolved; I know the ways I wronged you, and the hurt that is involved, with splitting up a family, ending a promise, walking away; but my heart is slowly healing, the sun brings a brand new day. I've been searching and been praying, asking God to show me the way, I've been seeking and been learning, a better way to say, the truth of what I really think, the truth of what I need, Had I known how to do it then… well… I would have. And I hope you can forgive me, I hope your heart moves on, I wish for relief from sorrow, and for peace when the day is done.

Friday, July 25, 2014

What I really want

My desire for what I want in life has seemed to overshadow the perception and reality of what I actually had... I wanted a family so badly I was willing to change anything to have it. Willing to give anything to keep it. Willing to be talked down to, willing to be seen as less important, willing to take on all the responsibilities of the family for fear that I would lose what I wanted if I didn't...

I wanted it to be. I wanted it to be what I thought it was more than I was willing to look at what it really was.

But I learned there are some parts of Carly that I cannot change, some aspects of me that I should not give away so freely, and that I am pretty wonderful just as I am. I learned that an unfairly balanced love just won't sustain itself on this roller coaster life.

And walking away was the best thing I could do...  there is always more to the story... and I'm gonna tell it.

Lil C's story:

I once heard an author say that meeting her inner child was like coming face to face with a silent stranger you’ve known forever. It was also that way with me.

I was instructed to go dig up an old picture of myself from before I could remember any pain or heartache. My first memory, at three years old, was exactly that… of pain and heartache. Though my task seemed daunting, I trudged through every old album I could get my hands on, and I searched. I found an old Polaroid of myself, little Carly, standing in the kitchen, toes smashed way down into my mother’s giant high heels, apron tied seven times around my tiny 4 year old waist, hanging nearly to the floor. And the biggest smile I’ve ever seen. This is when I met my Lil C.

As the author described, I felt like I was staring at a stranger. Lil C looked just like my then 4 year old daughter, and I could, of course, see the resemblance to my adult self, but the attachment of emotion was simply missing. Missing; like an enormous black hole in the top of my gut; quite the opposite of indigestion, and somehow quite similarly distressing. But there she stood, smiling. And there I sat, confused.

I have always believed I experienced a normal, healthy, solid, acceptable childhood. This belief guided every critical thought in my head. I’ve walked around feeling so guilty for my own hurt feelings, feeling responsible for my tragically flawed thinking patterns. And as I stared at Lil C’s perfect little face, I began to realize an awful truth; a truth which came crawling from that hole in the top of my gut like a demon with massive eagle-length arms, scraping at every organ along the way. This truth: that I have no memory of being told by my mother that I was ok no matter what, loved no matter what, forgiven no matter what; I was never made to believe that she felt lucky to be my mother, glad at the chance to know me, happy with the person I was. And that was only the tip of the abandonment ice burg. This truth crushed my soul, and I knew, beyond all reasoning I knew, that every child deserves unconditional love and endless teaching; and these are things my childhood did not provide.

These are things that my Lil C cannot live without; the reasons for my hurting and wasting and pain. So the task was set before me at that moment: I must work to develop my own voice of the loving parent to help quiet the storm of my inner Lil C, and shut down the voice of my inner critical parent. I can soothe the wounds left long ago which have governed me for longer than I know, I can find now what I needed then, and help my inner Lil C grow up and mature. Sound amazing? It is. This is my journey…