As I said in a past post, these few weeks have been a bit rough. I didn’t share with you all that I was back on the trying to conceive wagon, and it was proving once again to be highly emotional. Those old feelings of feeling not good enough were stirred, and I have decided to stop trying to conceive for good.
This decision brought up tremendous feelings of loss that coincided with marital frustrations. I was upset that A didn’t want to be as affectionate as I during a particular moment, and I was upset that she wanted to change the city where we are considering settling down two years from now. As I shared these feelings with her, I realized that the root of what I was feeling was a lack of control. Though so many things are going well in my life, not being able to control some key things (my fertility and my relationship) really got to me. But you know God always has a way of bringing you what you need when you need it.
This morning I decided to turn on Unity.FM. Though I attend Unity church, I just learned this Sunday that there was a radio station. Guess what the conversation topic was when I tuned in? Are you ready for it? “What Are You Trying to Control?” by Licensed Unity Teacher Janice Campbell. Yes, I had to laugh out loud because I know God was like “Mmmhmm, I got something for you.” I quickly jotted down notes on the back of this paper as the host advised a caller. The listener was talking about how she had a tense relationship with her daughter and didn’t really trust her. The host asked her to compare that relationship with the more positive ones. Then she laid a question on her that hit me in my core. “What gifts are you withholding?” She went on to explain that positive relationships are the ones in which people are authentically themselves. Tense relationships are those in which people are not their truest selves, and that it happens not because you don't trust the other person, but because you don’t trust that who you are is good enough.
I knew that was for me to hear.
A few weeks ago my friend C told me that I was withholding in my relationship, and I couldn’t see it. But now I do. I often write about the importance of discovering Who you are and celebrating your authenticity, but now it’s time for me to look in the mirror and see the places where I limit myself.
Janice Campbell shares that authenticity is our highest and best gift. When we share our whole Selves in the relationships where we hadn’t before, we create a safe place for others to be authentic as well. We create trust. Our attention shifts to see the gifts of the person in front of us.
I see the gauntlet has been thrown, and I will accept this challenge. Here are the questions I need to answer for my Self.
1- What relationships do I participate in that feel safe and trusting?
2- What gifts of myself do I share in those relationships?
3- What are my gifts I’m withholding in the relationships that feel less than safe and trusting?
4- What am I afraid will happen if I am authentically me in this relationship?
5- How will I challenge myself to be more authentic in this relationship?