It was overwhelming. It took over my psyche in a way that I would not have anticipated. What was it? Lunch with a Co-Woman on the Verge. Jane Devin and I had planned our lunch at a vegan restaurant on a sunny day in Tucson, Arizona and it was so lovely and healthy. Jane's intensity, that I had felt while doing our radio show, Living the Dream, was even more apparent in person. Her deep brown eyes, looking directly into mine as she told me the most incredible stories about herself. Unbelievable, almost, but the looking at her as she told her stories, and you felt the truth – deep into your soul.
She told me about her upbringing, her mother, her sister, her father. She told me about some of the outrageous jobs she has held. She told me about her poetry, her fear of snakes, and I listened. Totally mesmerized by her ability to stitch a tale until you are completely wrapped in its many layers and safely cocooned... or so you think.
Her ability to tell her stories, put me in a safe position to tell some of my own. Stories about my mother and my upbringing. I told Jane that my mother was very physical and dramatic – to the point of leaving some embarrassing marks from using whatever she could get her hands on (hair brushes, fly-swatters, spatulas) on my brother and me. And for some reason – especially on me.
Jane listened, just I listened to her. And when I told her that one day, when I was about 18 years old, my mother apologized to me, and admitted to my father that this had been happening all these years, Jane's jaw dropped open. She said that she wished her mother had apologized, and asked,”Did it make you feel better?” My answer was instantaneous. “No.” As in, hell no.
I shocked myself. I swear, I thought I was so over that old garbage. I thought, after decades, and decades, don't you think that I would be done with it already? For goodness sake, she apologized to me! But no, the little girl inside me reared up and stomped her feet and said it wasn't good enough. In fact, I even went as far as to say to Jane, “What the heck, it's not like I was her priest or anything. She confesses and I absolve her? No.”
Jane was kind to me as I had to make a hasty exit from our lunch. I had disgusted myself. Some nasty thing inside of me made a grand entrance and I was ashamed. Jane did not judge me. She did not berate me. And in the following days, she put up with numerous text messages and emails from me talking about my experience.
The experience was a gift, a healing gift from a beautiful and kind woman. She didn't even realize what she had done. All she did was generously give of herself and open the door in the process.
The days that followed, I practice my yoga, like I never had before. I did seven days straight of transforming exercises, to get rid of anger and to heal old wounds. By the end of the seven days, I was able to lovingly forgive my mother. Tears streaming down my face, more than two decades since her death, and I was able to forgive her and in the process, forgive and heal myself.
Founder of WomenontheVerge.net
Wow Ana. What a mesmerizing and wonderful way that you had of sharing a story that both showed the best and worst of behavior and the true growth and healing that could be done. I am so happy that you shared this so that I also could heal old wounds by your inspirational words. Thank you
|2246 days ago·1 replies1 replies|
I can talk up a storm, can't I?
I think my jaw dropped because it was really the first time - ever - I had heard anyone say that their abuser apologized. And maybe it was some sort of delusion on my part, but I always thought that if my mother had just said those two words, I'm sorry, that it would have made some sort of difference. Of course she never did and when confronted with anything her response was to deny or turn blame around (you deserved it).
It was such a wonderful experience meeting you in person. You're beautiful, inside and out, but what I appreciated most was that you are absolutely genuine -- there's no artifice to you, your expressions, or your language.
I admired that you were so open and I don't think your feelings were "nasty". They just were what you felt.....and you had a right to feel that way, just as you have the right to do whatever it takes to make you feel at peace.
Much love, Ana!
|2247 days ago·1 replies1 replies|