“Love is what we are born with. Fear is what we learn. The spiritual journey is the unlearning of fear and prejudices and the acceptance of love back in our hearts. Love is the essential reality and our purpose on earth. To be consciously aware of it, to experience love in ourselves and others, is the meaning of life. Meaning does not lie in things. Meaning lies in us.”
― Marianne Williamson
As she chased me and chased me, with the biggest smile on her precious face, I started to understand. As she joyfully waited for me to stop hiding around the edge of the hallway, to come and swoop her up into my arms, I started to understand, I started to remember. As I held her, and cradled her, and ran around the house carrying her, gently tossing her over my shoulder and into the air, witnessing time stop for a split second, like witnessing a future memory in the present moment before it became the past, as gravity brought both her warm heart and her innocent laugh back down into my arms, I started to understand, I remember, I started to get it…
As I let her go, and gently let her drop onto the soft couch and ran to hide again, watching her quickly get back up: laughing, smiling, anxious to feel that excitement again, I remembered. I hid around the edge of the hallway again, and I could feel her, I could feel her as she ran towards me, knowing exactly where I was, knowing exactly where to find me, knowing exactly where to go to find happiness, and being overly excited for what she knew was going to happen…
Love is natural … Fear is not, hate is not, pain is not; and children are absolute proof of this. Watch a child love you unconditionally, and learn from these precious angels as they are our best examples of perfect love, as Oprah likes to say “Children come from Heaven, trailing the breath of the angels.” They are so beautiful and there is so much that we can learn and remember from them.
As I left my mother’s house to head home after having so much fun playing with my niece, it broke my heart to see, only a few blocks away, a mother screaming at her precious child, her precious angel, her precious gift. It hurt me even more to see her daughter’s expression, standing completely stiff like a soldier, 3 feet of stone, unable to even look her mom in the eyes as her mother shouted and screamed at her, telling her “You don’t have a fu***** job, you listen to me until you’re old enough to get a job.” Broke my heart, broke my soul, broke my spirit…. Do you remember hearing words like that? You’re not good enough, you’re not important until you graduate, your opinion doesn’t matter yet, what do you know – you’re just a kid… Did any of those words feel natural to you? Now do you remember any beautiful memories? How did those feel? Swinging in the park, running to catch your mom or dad, eating your favorite ice cream or mid-day snack, what did that feel like?
The reason why your pain hurts and you hate the feeling of fear, pain, and worry is because those feelings are not natural, they are not your true self. You were born a miracle, you were born with a guidance system that guided you towards love, good feelings, and laughs. You did not care about physical things as much as you cared about love or joy. There was a feeling you wanted to feel, the experience of life itself was amazing. What happened to so many of us?
I hope we are all able to forgive who ever hurt us and told us that we weren’t good enough.
You are so perfect, you are such a miracle, and nothing but love is true for you… All you have to do is remember a part of it, find a piece of that natural love in your heart and then hold on to it, cherish it, water it and let it grow in your soul.
Love is natural for you. I hope you may find so many more things to make you smile, and hold onto those things that make you happy. Let go of the pain, hold on to the love, like holding your dad & mom’s hand as they guided you across the street, hold on to love and allow it to guide you home.
Israel S. Dudley
Photo by Susana Fernandez