Three years ago I wrote one of the most difficult posts of my life. In it, I describe why Father’s Day is deeply painful for me. Mostly, because my own dad isn’t, can't be, in my life. While this continues to be the healthiest choice for me, it is still tinged with grief.
You see, when a person chooses to harm us even when we ask them to stop, a relationship is no longer possible. And so, it's been for me.
But here is what strikes me today: awe at the possibilities of healing. I am humbled and grateful at the resilience embedded in our DNA by a God who never, ever leaves us or gives up on us. Almost as if overlooking a canyon just traversed, my gratitude is visceral. My body has kept the score of my healing and it's been worth it. The journey is scary and beautiful. It has been fraught with hardship, but oh my, it's priceless.
What I’ve learned in just these three years is so vast, it’s feels like a decade instead of just a few years. Mostly what I’ve learned in a new way, is how much it matters that we let light into our wounds. I've learned too, how connection and gentleness is the stuff of life. I’ve learned that even when we think our process is over--that it’s as healed as it will ever be—it’s not.
I actually adore this reality. I am grateful my thirty two year old self wasn’t as healed then as she would ever be. Indeed, there is more for me, and I believe for you too.
I have stepped back from blogging as much as I did a few years ago, primarily out of the need to stay sane, manage tiny people, and pursue some other projects I’m passionate about. But when I think about Father’s Day, about how many of us carry the shame of our parents, it cracks me open a bit, and this is why I write today.
For you, dear ones, the ones who don’t know yet—who have not yet experienced the balm of healing--I offer you this:
You are not the words spoken over you in anger.
You are not the shame you were given.
You are not too much.
You are not too little.
You are not other’s mistakes.
You are not the mistakes you’ve made.
You are not the trauma you’ve lived.
You are not the trauma in your body.
You, magnificent you, are the gorgeous handprint of a God who loves you madly.
You are the resilient, fireball who is still here; who hasn’t given up.
You are the valuable soul who is in process.
You are cared for + known.
You are deserving of kindness + worth second chances.
You are worth dying for.
You are right on time for your redemption—not early + not late.
You, magnificent you, are beloved.
Grace + Peace,