Tuesday, December 20
I’ve spent me first 50 years of my life protecting, sheltering, smothering, running interference for others. In essence, I made it my life’s purpose to be sure that other’s didn’t feel any pain, all the while, I was the walking wounded, bandaged from head to toe! I grew up thinking that it was my responsibility to be sure that others didn’t feel any pain!
Literally, on more than one occasion, God said to me, “I am trying to work here and you keep running interference for everybody! Move over and get out of my way!”
I’ve now come to see, (not so easily) that this helicoptering behavior actually is a hinderance not only to myself, but to the very ones that I am trying to protect. When I left my husband after the end of a 30 year marriage, I was truly a basket case. While I had a lot of support there was one sentence that a priest friend said to me that gave me the courage to stay true to my journey.
“Did you every think that you’re giving others an opportunity to grow, rather than you’ve deserted them?” As simple as that! That was the line that gave me the strength to stay away.
I’ve had to learn this lesson with my children, mostly my boys. There is something about mommies and their boys. (Actually there is something about the opposite genders.) As twisted as it sounds, there is something about women wanting the approval of the male and it’s not just me. To be even more specific, the opposite is true for many males as well. I’ve seen this over and over again, the male needing the approval of the female authority. (We’re working out something from our past.) We get opportunities to play this out with our children and other adult relationships as we move through our life’s journey.
There are many examples of practicing this in my GPS for Living Book. (Available now) It’s not an easy thing to do. When we choose ourselves, when we let go, when we do what is best for us, it can feel selfish. (Or so we’ve been told.)
But this rescuing, trying to protect others is detrimental to the expansion of the soul of another, not to mention our own.
Setting another free to find their own way in life is perhaps the Ultimate Gift. (See the movie by the same title) Whether it be a job, a child, spouse or someone that you’re in relationship with. Having the courage to figure out what makes you happy or at least knowing what doesn’t and making a change is perhaps the kindest thing that you can do for others but for yourself as well.