More often than not I am moved, inspired, brought to laughter and tears by the movies I watch, many of them over and over. I am opened to memory or possibility, movement and reflection. Along with music, movies got me through this life.

Today, I was struck by thoughts of family and friends  when I heard the following quote from “A River Runs Through It”. I had a realization that it was the culmination of the years of work I have done with making peace with family, realizing who they are and my relationships with them. 

“Each one of us here today will, at one time in our lives, look upon a loved one with a need and ask the same question. We are willing to help Lord, but what, if anything is needed? For it is true we can seldom help those closest to us. Either we don’t know what part of ourselves to give and more often than not, the part we have to give is not wanted. So it is those we live with and should know, who elude us, but we can still love them. We can love completely without complete understanding.”

I have seen this movie at least 15 times and yet today, as is often my experience, I heard these words spoken in a way not previously experienced. They brought me to the realization of a moment of high resolve. It brought me to a place of a circle completed. It brought to a place of pure acceptance of what is, in regards to members of my family and other relationships as well. 

For years, I wanted them to be different. Anybody else? For decades I have been disappointed again and again, even heart broken, as my expectations and attachments were rarely met. I didn’t feel seen, heard or valued. I wanted them to not only love me, I wanted them to be interested in me, to inquire, to listen. Many times I wanted them to help and wanted to help them in times when I thought I could share what I have learned over the years. 

Last night at our Sunday Evening Service at the Center for Spiritual Living in Santa Rosa, CA, we talked about listening. Practitioner Diane Tapogna led the evening as we had various opportunities to exercise our listening muscles. I was reminded of my most recent experience visiting some of my relatives last month in Kentucky. 

I had made up my mind before I left, and felt I could do it, which was to release any and all expectations as I had decided to listen instead of wanting to be listened to. I succeeded, in that I heard a myriad of things that let me know what was in their hearts and on their minds. No, no one asked about me, what I was up to, what I was doing and being in my life and it was OK, I learned about them. Even when I had the urge to “jump in and respond” in some way, I continued to listen, trusting that whatever was needed or wanted would be revealed to them in just the right way and in the right time. 

This morning I rediscovered, through this movie quote, that I too can “love completely without complete understanding”. My gratitude to my therapist, Lisa for guiding me in this process. I am forever grateful for all those who continue to participate in my healing. 

An Invitation: I invite you to be willing to entertain the possibility of your own healing with family and friends, in this very moment. I trust that the timing and communication is perfect for all of us. 

Quote for the day:  “Keep fresh before me the moments of my high resolve” Howard Thurman

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