When a friend poured out her heart about the stuff of life, I sent this response.
I see, hear, feel you. I’m walking in the direction I feel guided. Putting one foot in front of the other. Then self correct. I used to think there was one path and you’re either on the path or off the path. That’s the way of classical music and French cooking with Julia Child. Which is awesomeness at it’s best. Real life is more about jazz cooking. You have some guiding principles. You look at recipes for inspiration. You try things together in new combinations. Sometimes it works, sometimes you throw it out. And sometimes magic happens when the ingredients and the timing and cooking process all comes together in the moment. You and I have had those experiences – which is why we believe in them. And for whatever reasons, sometimes isn’t always. So we try again. We digest what we can and throw out the rest. And we learn. We learn what goes together. We learn what doesn’t go together. We learn about the cooking process called life. That’s the art of jazz living.
Father’s Day opens a can of worms for some people. Feelings of abandonment and unresolved issues resurface. This post is for people who want to find peace in their screwed up father relationships.
Some fortunate people had wonderful relationships with loving fathers. I was blessed with a father who loved, supported and encouraged his kids. I loved him dearly and still miss him daily. My father also screwed up – royally. He spent half of his adult life as an emotionally unavailable alcoholic – and then celebrated 29 years of sobriety when he died. He went bankrupt and lost the family home – and then rebuilt a comfortable retirement income which benefited his family. He cheated on his marriage more than once – and, due to my mother’s graciousness, my father rebuilt a loving relationship with her and his children.
Fathers screw up sometimes. We all screw up sometimes. Looking at my father’s life and screw ups with compassion gave me a new perspective into my own life and my own mistakes. My new awareness brought me peace with my father and with myself.
Fathers are people with unmet needs too – even those men whom we do not admire. Maybe they had abusive fathers themselves with no good role models in sight. Maybe they had unrealistic expectations of themselves and their abilities and therefore felt inadequate. Maybe our culture imposed unrealistic expectations on them.
One of the saddest things I have heard was from Brené Brown’s interview with a man who said his wife and children would rather see him die on his white horse than to see him fall down. Ouch.
Cheers to the men who fall down and get up again. And again. And again.
Cheers to the men who confront their inner demons and live to tell the tale. Because some men don’t make it through the rain. (Tribute to Barry Manilow) “I made it through the rain and found myself respected by the others who got rained on too, and made it through.”
I’m not letting anyone off the hook for screwing up, lying, cheating, stealing, or abusing and belittling someone to make themselves feel powerful. Abusing power is never ok. But each of us can choose whether to hold on to judgment of themselves and others. I encourage you to make amends now and make better choices next time.
It’s not too late to make amends, to write the letter, to make the phone call, to visit the person who longs to hear your voice saying they are loved. I screwed up and I still love you. Or you screwed up and I’m really pissed off, but I want to understand your perspective. Let’s talk.
If, for whatever reason, you’re not able to confront that father-child relationship in person, reach out energetically and spiritually. Write the letter and burn it. Say a prayer in your heart. Connect Soul to Soul and speak your piece to the wind. Then, let go and listen with your heart for the next step.
I specialize in helping people heal relationships at a spiritual level. Let me know if I can help. The higher perspective from a spiritual level brings clarity and inner peace – often this builds the bridge to outer peace.
Leah Skurdal is a Stress Resilience Coach and Energy Healer who helps people uplevel their stress response so they can uplevel their relationships with the people who matter.Reach out to her at firstname.lastname@example.org