You Are LovedBy Patti Gerrish
December 31, 2006
This article is a testament to Patti's determination to learn to love and thereby heal the very abused and wounded child within her. Patti shares her struggle in loving a part of herself that she thought was bad and evil. Through her spiritual connection, Patti learns to love this part of herself and to know that she is loved.
"I want you to love me," she weeps as I hold her in my arms, caressing her head, "Yet, I know that you never can. No one can ever love me for I am too evil, too vile, too disgusting." In this moment she is too blinded by her own self-hatred to experience the love that I am offering her. I grieve for her pain, a pain that no child should know. I am angered by the abuses that led her to self-hatred. I take a deep breath, pulling my eyes away from the tortured soul in my arms. Looking into the loving eyes of Spirit I ask, "What can I do?' Love and compassion pour forth, Spirit reaches for us, pulling us into her embrace, enfolding us in her wings. "Be patient, be gentle and most of all believe," she replies.
The above isn't a tale about despair. Instead it is a testimony to the tremendous healing power of embracing those wounded aspects of ourselves. A few months ago the little girl in my arms (a part of me) was so resistant that she wouldn't sit near me, she would not even turn around and face me. With patience and love there came a time when her wall came down and from that time there wasn't a day that went by without her spending time in my arms. At times, her resistance was still present. In those times it was simply a protection against a deeper belief she was guarding against exposing. Just as it took time to gain her trust in surrendering her resistance, it took time and the help of others to learn what she did not want to tell. When it came out, her world came tumbling down and began anew all in the same instant.
Years ago, alone and hurting, she had no choice but to turn her eyes inward. As the loneliness and anger filled her tiny body its intensity soon plunged her into darkness. Huddled alone in the darkness her mind filled with fear, a fear that grew so great it threatened to consume her. She had been thrust, quite unprepared, into this darkness, but there was one thing that had always gotten her through before. Desperately she searched her mind. Would her time-tested friend be with her? There it was. As relief floods through her veins, she quickly begins to imagine the vilest monster she can think of. So disgusting that no one will love it. Yet she isn't creating the monster to protect her. No, she is the monster and safety returns.
Hidden for years in the dark recesses of my mind she cleverly worked her magic, extinguishing the flames of love before they could catch hold. She gained power as her experiences of life seemed to prove just how unlovable she was. Then I stumbled into her little corner of darkness and before she could stop me, I turned on the light. In a room full of people, most of whom I had met only a few days earlier, I was about to rip the veil of secrecy down from in front of her. "What is it about me that seems to keep you all at arms length," I ask. One person shares that she feels an energy that seems to say "Don't get too close". Several others echo this sentiment. A second person says he feels judged. Knowing that there is truth in both of these observations, I still feel that there is something deeper at work here. Finally, a third person shares his observations about my childhood pictures that I had been looking at throughout the day. He asks if I can see how beautiful and loveable she is. The floodgates open and she retorts back, "There is no way I am loveable." Her "ugliness" fully exposed, she awaits rejection. Not expecting to be embraced, she reacts in the only way she knows how, pulling away, suspiciously eyeing this person who wants to love her. The intensity of the loneliness she felt courses through my body and I understand why she needed to hold so strongly to her conviction that no one could love her. For, as a child, to have believed she was loveable in such a pit of loneliness would have surely robbed the very breath from her soul.
I strayed to the path of fear for a time. Disconnected from Spirit, I struggled to "fix" this broken child. Knowing that all I needed to do was ask, I took a walk and prayed for Spirit to give me guidance. Later that night Spirit gave me a vision and asked "Which of these two children would know your love?" First I saw myself walking up to the abandoned child who had been living on the street. I said to the child, "Let me take you somewhere and wash you up a bit. Then I will show you how much you are loved". Then Spirit replayed the scene, only this time I simply walked up and embraced the child, dirty clothes an all, saying, "You are loved". In that moment I knew what I needed to do. In order for my child to ever see herself any differently, she needs to be loved for who she is now. Someday she will come to know the truth. She will not be convinced with words; instead she must be healed through experience. She has returned to my embrace. Surrounded by Divine light, she listens to Spirit's words. Someday she will know the truth; until then she is loved just the way she is.
In all things there is choice.
Today I choose to know her;
to accept her;
to embrace her;
to love her;
to heal her.
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In your relationships, do you focus on what you love about the person or on what you don't like? Which do you offer the most - appreciation or criticism? Since no one will ever meet your idea of perfection, why waste energy on complaints and criticism? If you spend your energy offering love and appreciation, you will find your heart feeling full of love.
By Dr. Margaret Paul