I have been planning for months to get my new website/blog up and running, and I’ve been having a hard time just STARTING. It is without question, that the hardest part of any endeavor is just getting started!
So here I am today, just showing up. No fancy logo. No fancy new wordpress template. Stripped bare of any sort of actual plan…just being me, telling you what is on my mind …and sure in the knowledge that if I just take this first step, everything else will fall into place as needed.
This same frame of mind can apply to many things
This morning, I woke at 4am like I’ve done everyday for the last three weeks. See, I’m in the middle of making massive progress on writing, organizing, and detailing the concept behind my book. What book? Many of you don’t even know I’ve been writing a book…or that it has been in progress for over 20 years now. Don’t worry, I’ll get to more on that later.
What I need to tell you is what happened when I woke this morning and headed down to my studio. I thought I had come down here with the intentions of working on the book, but as I began to think, once again, of which one of my stories is most important to tell, how to set it’s parameters, what the core message is that I want to convey, and was about to spiral into that “what am I doing” state of self-doubt, I realized that what I had to write today was much more important than any of that.
I found that I could only think about my Father and how important he is to the story…and to my life.
So I took the time I needed to write him a 5 page letter that tells him just how I feel. And let me tell you, this is no easy feat…5 pages only scratches the surface. We are not, and never have been, easily affectionate with our embraces or our words in my house as I grew up. To this day, I struggle with simply saying “I love you” to those who I care about most in life.
Today, however, I put that irrational fear aside, and just put it all out there. I explored the details of my heart. I told him how truly grateful I am to have him in my life–because without him, I wouldn’t have become who I am today…I potentially wouldn’t even be alive today, if it wasn’t for his uncomplicated, unconditional way of loving me throughout my whole life. Knowing that he needed me, loved me, and wanted me, kept me going in some of my worst moments. In return, It’s important that right now, he know just how much I love him.
This year, along with several others, have taught me just how quickly life can shift in an instant. Only a few months ago, my Dad had another heart attack…only 3 short years after his first that resulted in a quadruple bypass that fixed 5 vein/artery blockages. This heart attack was the result of one of those veins collapsing. Thankfully, he pulled through again, and seems to be doing well now.
Every time I think of losing him, though, I can feel my heart instantly breaking. I can feel how it would simply tear me apart. My breath catches, and my chest clenches tightly…near panic at the thought of how much it would hurt.
I don’t have a large family…and for the longest time I’ve felt that I don’t have a close family…and losing my Dad would narrow what does exist to almost nothing. However, that feeling itself is changing. It’s slowly shifting, and it’s because of my willingness to open up more, to listen more intently, and to put myself out there…letting the people around me know what they mean to me.
Now, more than ever, I am completely aware of how important it is to slow down and take the time we need to let our loved ones know just how important they are to us. In our fast paced lives we need to remember to reconnect and nurture our most important relationships…and not just on holidays!
Today I am vowing to become more connected…to not wait until the right moment to say “I love you.”
While I feel like it is difficult for me to be an affectionate person, I’m seeing that the more effort I put into it, the more I listen and truly see the people around me…the more vibrant life becomes. I’m making more meaningful connections everyday, and finally starting to feel that amazing feeling of truly being part of a family. And it’s imperative to note that family often goes well beyond mere blood relations. Family is comprised of whoever lifts you up when you are down, who is there for you no matter what, and whom love you unconditionally.
So if you haven’t said it in awhile…make sure today you tell your Dad (because it is officially Father’s Day in the USA) exactly how much he means to you and why. He needs to hear it and you need to slow down enough to take the time to connect with one of the most influential people in your life who has contributed (both good and bad) to who you are today.
And after you do that…don’t stop there.
Talk to the next person on your list…did you make a list yet? No? Make one. Now. Put everyone on it who means something to you, be it your Mom, Aunt, Uncle, Son, Daughter, Old Friend, or the stranger who smiled at you on the street.
Talk to them, especially if it’s someone who is difficult to communicate with in this moment of your life. Those relationships that are strained or currently difficult may be where you need to start. They may be the people who really don’t know how you feel, and telling them could make a world of difference. Call them up. Pay a visit sometime in the near future. Just make an effort to reconnect.
Be open to how things could change with the mere use of your words. Don’t hold them to who you expect them to be. Allow them to grow and change, to become who they are meant to be, and they most likely will be more open to letting you be who you are. Tell them without expectation. Don’t expect a response of any kind. Just tell them how you feel…the good things…the feelings of gratitude you have for them. Even if it’s hard to think of just one thing about them you are grateful for, try it. It just might begin to change everything.
Everyone needs to hear the words “I love you, you are important to me, and I’m so thankful to have you in my life”.
Most of us don’t hear those words enough. Some of us may have never heard them…and for those who haven’t, those simple words, could make such a difference as to literally save their life.
I find myself wishing I would have told my Mother this…that just as I was finally forgiving her, and coming to terms with our history, I wish I would have had the courage to step up and tell her that I love her and that she was important to me. If I had, she might still be here, watching my children grow. Regardless of how things may have or may not have been different, I know now that it is important to just get it out. Say it. Write it if it’s easier. Just put it out there so that the person that needs to hear it does.
And it’s not only about the potential of saving a life in literal terms…your words can save the life you live together from here on out. They have the potential of creating stronger relationships, of nourishing the souls of everyone around you, so that you can all live a more fulfilling and meaningful life. Loneliness doesn’t serve anyone, so take a chance and open up a little.
It’s not always going to be easy…but I’m going to try my best to do this with the people in my life who I care about. What about you? Did you make an effort today to tell someone what they mean to you?
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|Be Still. Have Faith.|
|Be Still. Have Faith.|