Clarity in knowing exactly the legacy I choose to lead and live for my children.

Yesterday was a rough day, a day I temporarily gave back control of my feelings to my former self, the self that lived to please, thrived on gaining validation, the self that was the insecure and a self-sacrificing pleaser. Yuck.

It was a day that many yucky feelings of childhood emerged. A day that sucker punched me back to a grave day 14 months ago when I read the last page – a formal declaration forming the only addendum of my father’s Last Will and Testament.

The worst day if my life. I had lived 45 years yearning for his attention, approval, credit and validation. When I read the words he articulated in that formal declaration, his final words of his final earthly document, words directed solely at me, it truthfully was the lowest point of my life. Shattering, cruel words of his truths that he felt compelled to level against me, on his terms, with no reproach. If I ever doubted his approval and unconditional love as a parent, there was not an ounce of doubt after that moment – or since, or ever.

What saved me from spiraling into self-pity and wallowing in depressingly tough, wound licking moments then and now is choosing to believe in me. Believing I am enough, although never enough for him – his ultimate gauge is not my ultimate truth.

I digress – so back to yesterday, I was tipped off by a wise friend that I needed to read “Girl, wash your face”. And so upon her recommendation, I read it. It was the defib paddles, the kick in the ass, the grab me by the lapels I needed.  

“…you can’t blame your past for the things that went wrong if you aren’t willing to be thankful for the things that went right… you cannot ignore your pain. You cannot ever leave it behind completely. The only thing you can do is find a way to embrace the good that came out of it… pain and trauma are a violent whirlpool and they will drag you under if you don’t battle to stay afloat.”

The best thing that came of that climax, of years yearning and falling short in the eyes and heart of a parent is the greatest blessing and life lessons. Clarity in knowing exactly the legacy I choose to lead and live for my children.