Years ago, I bought an organic t-shirt for my Dad. We were in a food coop together when he saw it. I could tell he liked it. It was next to some that were half-off. He was tempted, but didn’t buy it. When he went to buy food at the deli, I grabbed it and secretly paid for it. Turns out it wasn’t half-off, but I bought it anyway. He loved that shirt, commenting over the years how soft it was. How good it felt. What a good deal it was.
When he died, I took his shirt back with me to Washington. It was, after all, organic. It did feel good. I couldn’t bear to let it go.
Now I’m traveling with my show If I Were Me… I’d Know What I Want spending time in Arizona. I decide it’s time to let it go. I packed it with me on a hike to Cathedral Rock in Sedona, a heart-opening vortex. I laid it on a rock, blessed my Dad for all the good he brought into my life. I also acknowledged some of the dysfunction in our relationship.
Many times I felt invisible. Like he didn’t see me for who I was. I thought out loud with a bittersweet realization… I paid full price alright. But it wasn’t the money that came to mind. It was a feeling of sacrificing myself to be who he wanted me to be. If he knew the price I paid, he wouldn’t have wanted me to sacrifice that much.
Making this connection brought me a great deal of peace.
The moment I laid his shirt on the rock, I realized how I’ve replayed this pattern in love relationships, including the one that ended the day before.
I see the pattern clearly. I notice a spring in my step with hopes of finally getting my next relationship right. Awareness is everything.
A guy zips by me on his mountain bike gleefully asking, “Do you like the trail we created for you?”
I smile to myself, “Actually I don’t like the trail you made for me.” It’s time to make my own path! Trust that I deserve to be loved for who I am, not who someone else wants me to be.
Letting go of a pattern that had been with me for over 50 years felt scary. I sat by the creek forgiving myself for all the times and all the relationships where I hadn’t revealed my true self so that I could be accepted by whatever man was in my life at the time.
When I left the creek to walk back to my car, my next step was this rock.
Stepping onto that heart-shaped rock I knew everything was going to be ok. My heart is strong. My heart is beautiful. I deserve a healthy relationship where I’m safe to be myself and seen for who I truly am.