I would have answered this differently a week ago.
This week our Master Mind Alliance has been on a KINDNESS fiesta! Noticing acts of kindness. Participating and expressing kindness. This could be in a word, a deed or any kind expression.
One of the values I hold highest and most dear is that of Kindness.
I learned early on the power of kindness. My father was not only one of the most kind but also the most generous of souls. However, he showed it in a quiet and unassuming way. He was able to hold space for another person, no matter their race, color, creed, station in life or other – he could hold this energy of pure kindness. So I grew up with the idea that it wasn’t just an act but a presence.
The acts that my father, and really both my parents, would carry out for so many people, were generous acts of kindness. However, there were times when those acts of kindness to others, was an act of brutality and deprivation to themselves.
We learn what we live.
My father gave so much to others – in the form of loaning his car, his time, his treasure, his talent, his wisdom, his peace, his shoulder. To this day, I’ve not met another who surpassed this level of kindness shared to others without any expectation of a return. It’s just who he was.
As I practiced an increasing level of kindness this week, giving little gifts that could support another, going out of my way in some acts, and just doing any little thing that could make a big or small difference, I experienced a greater understanding for the power of kindness to one self.
Every day I work to improve myself.
To be a better mom, a better friend, a better teacher, woman, person, business owner, healer. Constant improvement.
You’d think I’d be perfect with all this work! NOT.
Clearly there is much to learn, or I just have a long way to go? No, I don’t think that either.
More likely, it’s just a continuous process of progressing forward.
So with this work, if I do something that seems to upset another, I consider that I have fallen short of my best. I dig to correct this error and make up any damage caused.
But what I have done also, is to punish myself. To blame myself, even shame myself a bit (been getting way better since studying Brene’ Brown and Pema Chodran).
In one instance, I genuinely gave from a place of kindness with no need for any acknowledgment or anything in return, but it was received as a betrayal.
That was so fascinating and deeply sad to me.
It is a place where I had to bring all the compassion to myself I could muster in order to understand that it wasn’t about me.
Because I completely introverted and it hit a place inside of me: a mixed jumble of judgment and punishment, shaming and blaming, fear, self loathing and unworthiness. A dark place indeed. Places I feel no one should ever need tread.
(Right now in this red hot moment I wish more than anything that no other being, no other person, soul, human, animal, of any chi structure, ever have to experience that form of torture. Hear my prayer.)
As I processed the experience, and continued to give in ever increasing abundance, kindness from my heart, I began to give more and more kindness to my self! This in turn allowed me to receive kindness, words, acts, expressions of kindness from so many areas. Were they always there and I just had not received them?
Had I not been open to recognizing these kindnesses?
Yes, I believe so. A lesson. Valuable indeed.
I realized I didn’t have to ask for approval from this person. That I gave the best of myself, in a kind and generous way. That it was received through a filter of their own sadness, convictions and demons. Perhaps they had their own idea of what it meant to be kind to themselves and that that was their way of expressing it as it served some need in them. It is after all my opinion of their reaction.
We can never know what is in another’s head or heart.
But we should never set our compass based on another’s heart set or mind set.
We must cultivate our own kindness. Kindness toward ourselves first. That is the greatest lesson for me this week.
How I wish I could express this to my father. How I wish I could tell him how grateful I am for every act of kindness he showed to me and that I observed him do. That his legacy lives on and that I am eternally grateful to have known him and been his daughter. I know, likely you do as well, that he does know. But a part of me so deeply wants to look in his physical eyes, tell him thank you from the deepest part of my heart and hug him for every hug I failed to give him and myself over the past 48+ years. For now, this will suffice, thank you for being my father and for being my angel now. I have felt your presence this week and KINDNESS is omnipresent.
This week…so much has happened. So much continues to happen. Those of us on this MKMMA journey know this. It is life changing. To cultivate with a group of individuals around the globe for a common purpose. It’s powerful.
Love and Light
The cover photo is me – Kelly my former husband and friend, came over with an act of kindness toward each other, I modeled for him and he got to test out a cool new camera lens!! Awesome!! That’s me channeling Game of Thrones through fashion 😉