“Who holds you?”
This has been one of the most powerful questions I have ever been asked.(I was in my spirituality residency [chaplaincy] at the hospital, and my supervisor asked me this as a reflection question). I was stunned that as I tried to respond, I began to cry. It was the kind of cry, where you have to work really hard to get yourself together. My tears seemed to be the only answer I could give, because I honestly didn’t know how to answer the question at all. After I left our meeting, I reflected some more, and I still couldn’t put my finger on it. Why was I feeling so broken, so confused by this question?
I did the natural thing for me: Evaluate my feelings…figure out where they stemmed from…what was the reason for my tears? I even sort of fought with myself internally about my tears: I know I am loved. I come from a family that loves me. I have people around me who love me. I believe God loves me. So why then do I feel so darn empty inside, each time I try to answer this question?
This happened in 2004. Here I am 9 years later, and I still reflect on this question. The question of, “Who holds you?” for me has always meant “Who loves you?” For many years, I kept searching for what Love was supposed to be like: that perfect kind of love. But as time has gone on I realize that by searching for perfect Love, many times I’ve missed the opportunity to really embrace moments of Love in my life, because I was afraid that it wasn’t the “right” kind of love, or the way love was “supposed to be.” So I walked around life feeling empty, when Love was all around me, waiting patiently for me to let it in.
My answer to this question has changed over the years. I’ve found a peace inside myself over time…instead of trying to figure out my reaction to this question over the years, I’ve learned to “Let it be;” i.e., trust more deeply that life will reveal its answers to me, when it is the right time. And in many ways, I finally feel I have come to an answer that I feel to be most truthful to who I am both in my every day life and in my spiritual life. I now recognize that each time I was trying to figure out where Love was in my life, I was actually preventing myself from experiencing it because I was searching too hard for it; i.e. I was getting in my own way of really being able to feel “held.” Instead of searching for love in my life, I now allow myself to feel Love, to experience Love, and most importantly Love myself so that I can even more honestly share my love with others and receive love from others. In other words, I allow Love to be what it is, and not what I expect it to be. I’ve gotten out of my own way! Now I feel safe and secure with Love’s arms holding me up, with a strength that will never break. Love is always there for me, and for you. It’s everywhere in nature, in people, in God, in the Spirit, in this amazing gift of Life, and inside you…you just need to give yourself the freedom to experience it without putting up so many walls.
How are you going to let Love into your life?
We all search for relationships in our lives, and deeper connections…open yourself to looking deeper within you, so that LOVE may spring forth anew for you.
You are Beloved. You are Loved.
So I leave you with my question today, “Who holds you?”
…and just remember that whatever your answer is today, it may change again tomorrow: be gentle with yourself, offer yourself love…and your answers will come. I have faith that they will for you.
Blessings, Erin, Bella Bleue
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11 thoughts on “Getting in Your Own Way: Missing out on Love”
I love that Rumi quote. A great deal of my spiritual journey so far has been finding the barriers to love, and for me it has been fear. I am learning to let go of resistance and feel the flow of love. I am learning to love myself!!
Thank you for your wonderful message and encouragement, just by sharing about your journey of more deeply understanding yourself, and how love is at work in your life. Yes, fear is definitely something that gets in my way too. I have to work at dismissing the worry, and allowing myself to more freely trust that something good will find its way into my life, even with change.
ERIN! A really really beautiful post, dear heart! Yes, I remember being posed this question at some point in my own training — “who holds you?” It’s one that stopped me in my tracks. Huh…who holds me? How do I hold myself? Do I allow others to hold me? What about God? It really was the start of learning to SOFTEN and allow. Just as you so beautifully describe here! So lovely, Erin. Love to you, Lisa
Thank you, dear Lisa! I guess it’s a popular question with spiritual direction and development! I appreciate your image and feeling of SOFTEN. I know it’s a word you turn to often in your writing, and it has such a powerful feeling to it, although it is so gentle, and literally soft. Thank you for sharing, and blessings on your sharing with your new community at Georgetown!
I like where you say “..I was getting in my own way..”! It reminds me how close love and war are intrinsically linked.
I think it was Franklin Roosevelt who said “The only thing we have to fear is fear itself!
We fear what we do not know and we search so hard to find the answers and all the time it is right there in front of us waiting for us to notice and welcome the love that is. You have said it well!
Thank you for your sharing, your compassion and wisdom, Holistic Complications. There is truth in that famous statement of Love and War having a relationship! And fear, oh, that gets in my way too. I work on that daily. I’m good at worrying! So life is a daily learning, and a daily embracing and trusting.
Blessings on your journey, Erin
Such a very meaningful wonderful post dear Erin…. The whole time reading I wondered if you were going to “go inside” and offer that “who holds you” is truly deepest – most authentic self — or as some might also say God — and you certainly got there. The nature – so huge for me there too… can truly feel the love of a flower or an ocean. I think it’s about being open – and letting it in … and then all the pieces fall into place and we don’t have to wonder about experiencing the ‘perfect love’. The Rumi quote you chose is a favorite of mine… and your image breathtaking. We are in sync too… I was working today on a rose image I took last week — perfect love I’d say ~
Blessings Always and thank you ~ Robyn
I love the image of the “pieces falling into place.” It’s this falling into place without forcing them that I am learning and working at each day. It’s trusting in that which is greater than me, God, the Divine, to see me through…so yes, I was getting there! So wonderful of you to be aware! I just looked at your rose image and prose, so beautiful. I love the image of being opened petal by petal, and more deeply loving and being loved.
Blessings of love and peace to you, Erin
Thank you for your ongoing support, and encouragement. You are such a beautiful presence here at my Blog, and in life. May your own journey of searching continue, but be gentle with you, and open its pathways to new beginnings whenever you need them.
As always, your loving kindness and wisdom are greatly appreciated, my friend. Have a beautifully blessed week! S