Self-Protective Hope

Self-Protective Hope

Self-protection.  Do we allow it to get in the way of progress?  Does fear of harm or ridicule stunt our growth.  Do we view outside forces as something to hide from?  Or do we learn to adapt? 

I watch the water form a river in the leaf of a plant.  My mind wanders to the self-protective ability of a succulent to divert the harmful power of torrential rain from washing it away.

How much of our environment and its harsh elements helped create who we are today?  The adaptation of our natures cannot be ignored as we learn to deflect the ominous, hurtful, degenerative, toxic messages that may have been forced upon us.

When the vicious prey on us, we have our cloaking devices.  We do not have to expose ourselves to harmful situations to become more powerful.  Power resides in the protection of the gift we are given.  There is no need to flaunt or battle.

Deflecting criticism protects our tender roots.  These roots ground us in a hostile yet beautiful terrain.  The vast wilderness becomes manageable as we adapt by using our strengths.  Our beings are created for survival and hope.

The love in our hearts survives in deflection.

©Erika K Rothwell

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Hope – In Ashes of Love

Hope – In Ashes of Love

Hope arises from the ashes, a time to reframe and rebuild.  

Love begins as a flame that burns so bright.  Eventually, there are only embers, flickers of warmth lighting up what remains.  

When we are left with the cold ashes of a fully disintegrated relationship, only hope can move us forward.  Hope for second-chances, hope for change, and hope for a new life motivates our steps in the right direction.

To risk love is to risk being hurt.  The paradox that exists within relationships can send ripples of sorrow our way.  But love is not supposed to hurt us, so why all the pain?

We were not born to live another person’s life.  Yet once we fall in love, the connection makes it difficult to recognize where our boundaries end and the other’s begin.  At times we may even feel lost to ourselves, fully engrossed in our loved one’s drama, leaving little time for our own development.  

Yet why do we fight against freeing ourselves from a destructive cycle, even when possessive and dependent actions suck the life out of us?  

It is only by letting go of the illusion of what could be, allowing what is, and accepting we are powerless over another’s choices in life that heals what is left of a suffering relationship.  We can make a choice.  When we stop responding to the narratives of the past, we find strength within the power of adversity.  As the poet, Rumi said, “The wound is the place where the Light enters you.”

If and when we have embraced our inability to fix the other person and the embers burn out, we will know it is time to move on.  The suffering is done.  The closure is painful yet peaceful, and we must believe hope will light another fire when it’s time.  For Rumi also said, “where there is ruin, there is hope for treasure.” 

– Erika K Rothwell

Disclaimer: This was written for the loved ones in my life facing breakups and heartbreak. Empathy from my past ignited the rawness of this post.

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