Sunday, November 28, 2010

Birthday note to my moms and dad November 18th

Clearly I understand that the reasons behind taunting always stem from insecurities and fears inside the one doing the putting down. I know too that the enmity I endure from those I care for comes from a place of fear and anger at aging and so many things changing around them. I don't need to imagine how hard it would be to be a person that got treated harshly by someone who needed to put someone else down to feel better about themselves, I live with it daily. I am graced with an ability to charm (thanks dad) and comfort (thanks mom)
What would be hard to imagine would be how impossible it would be to ever truly feel good about myself if I had to rely on other people around me to validate what I already know. You guys taught me a lot of self reliance, you know. And I appreciate the people in my life who love me, but I know I wouldn't even have those good people around if I didn't honor and know the truth of my own soul. I love and know myself well enough to know that the love and support and care I get from others is the icing on the cake. That's the key. Love thyself.
Theologically (if I may sound like dad for a minute-another nod to you dad) at St. Edwards University (thanks for making that happen mom, I am eternally grateful) I learned that "God" dwells in each and every one of us. So to achieve true good one need only let "God" out of your soul via your actions and movement in the world. There is no force moving things around other than the collective energy of those who populate this earth. Dad would not agree, he feels there are several other layers, and while I agree that there are no doubt other layers, how much ability or interest to manipulate the slice we live in is debatable. Wishing everyday for something will only give you hunger. Go and do. Here it is, my Oprah couch moment: Get up everyday and do good. Its my secret-principle-agreement-habit and so far so good. The Dali Lama I am not, but I have read his books too and he touches upon the same ideas. I owe my three parents a giant debt of gratitude for giving me the tools and teaching to seek answers, thanks for the Head Start and the liberal upbringing, all the alternative lifestyles and the variety of cultures you made sure I experienced. Trips to Europe and life in the Caribbean...being son to a single mother, these things made me love diversity and appreciate women. Thank you.
A big nod to Elizabeth, who taught me to cook and to forgive and forget, to rise above and know myself. No son is as lucky as I am to have had such a strong mom. I cherish the times we enjoyed in the kitchen on Hidalgo, and look forward to more. Sorry the mediatating didn't stick.
Back when I didn't love myself, I ignored or worse attacked my loved ones, found little time to do good in the world and generally took up space. I decided to change and do good. It works. When I lose sight of it, things get funky. Will it work? Its better than wishing. Its better than sitting around the house hoping for change. I'm out there, I help and change and comfort and it rolls back in in spades.

Please note that I am not attacking anyone's beliefs here, mom. And you should know that you push my buttons when you drop the pop-psychology book stuff on me, I am glad it works for you and only feel that you should realize that everything you are looking for in these "shelf help" books is already inside you.
Thanks ya'll for making the crazy wild decision to carry me into this world, I love you!!!

1 comment:

  1. I wrote this to my mom Lisa on November 17th, the day before my birthday. It didn't start out as a manifesto, but it became one. I forwarded it to my father, since I was worried mom might get upset about it's message. I knew he would help her understand I meant well. Before posting here, I edited slightly and added a mention of Elizabeth. Elizabeth was my step-mom throughout my pre and teen years. She is an amazing person and continues to inspire and shape me even when she doesn't realize it. I love her too, but the triangle of my parents isn't exactly amicable. I accept this, but I love each of them with equality and hold all of them in the highest regard for helping me to grow up. I understand that they won't get along, but I want them to know that it doesn't matter to me. You are all my parents.


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