"You are the bows from which your children as living arrows are sent forth." -Kahlil Gibran
Yesterday a dear friend shared with me that he was embarking on a day long spiritual journey with his eldest son today, hiking and exploring the top of a magestic waterfall in the Sierra Nevada mountain range, of the western North America. Following thoughts and feelings of gratitude, excitement, and happiness for my friend's forthcoming experience, I became aware of difficult emotions surfacing within. These emotions included sadness, denial, anger, and ultimately acceptance. Knowing that my difficult emotions had nothing to do with my friend's journey, I made the decision to sit with these emotions and become the observer of what was coming up within, what they felt like, where I would physically notice them, knowing that if I was willing to push past the temporary discomfort that I would experience the gold that lay beneath.
Not having a consistent father (I had three) male role model growing up, or a father who was willing to accept me as his own, much of my adult life I carried the guilt and shame of not being worthy of love and exhibit challenges of showing up as my authentic self for fear of my true self being abandoned. Sitting with the difficult emotions that surfaced upon hearing the exciting news of my friend's embarkment on such a special journey with his son, I was able to relatively quickly experience these emotions fall over me and through me like a warm blanket that was wrapped around me, before slowly sliding down my body. What I was left with was the gold of feeling connected to all of the fatherless sons in the world; that the separation I have felt off and on throughout my life was really an illusion. I believe that I am connected to all through experience.
There are significant gifts resulting from all of my experiences; especially the experiences that I would consider difficult. I may not know what the gifts are in the moment, but know that if I have the willingness and courage to sit with the difficult emotions that surface, I have an opportunity to experience these gifts in the present. My gifts of sitting with the difficult emotions that surfaced as mentioned above include a dissolution of the feeling of separation, the knowing that I may be able to connect with one who has experienced similar, related experiences, where another man may not, and the realization that although I did not have a physical father who was there to provide guidance, nurturing and support, I had the experience of being fathered by God, and was never left alone.
Today I honor my friend, and all fathers, for showing up in his sons life and for providing the guidance, love and support that will assist in realizing his own path while equipping him with the required tools needed along the way.
God, thank you for providing me the comfort and safety to allow me to experience all that has been laid in front of me. I know there is a purpose for all of my experiences. I pray for continued awareness to show up when opportunities arise to share my gifts and experiences with others who may find benefit and comfort in realizing or knowing that no one is truly alone, and that all are connected through our experience. Not my will, by thy will be done.