Acceptance in Every Peace of My Heart

Ahh. Acceptance. Of self. Beauty and the Beast. Yin and Yang. Light and Dark.

Sister Joan Chittister writes:

Self-knowledge gives us perspective, and self-esteem gives us confidence, but it’s self-acceptance that gives us peace of heart.

One of the most challenging things I have ever done is to accept myself as a mother who once was so lost she believed the only path to peace of heart was to desert her daughters.

It’s a long story.

The short version is, I got lost in an abusive relationship and lost myself. In that dark place, I held no mercy for me. I was beyond saving.

I believed the only way to save my daughters was to leave them. Because without me in their lives, I believed they would be free to live their lives without the pain and shame of me and all I’d done to hurt them.

Learning to love and accept myself as that mother was not easy. Especially when the question I asked myself everyday was, “What kind of mother would do that?”

And while the answer was wrapped up in the pain and trauma of being abused, I had to practice self-compassion and mercy every single day — for a long time, whether on some days I wanted to or not —Β  to get to a place where I could look at that woman who was, and is, me and say, “I forgive you. I love you.” I had to be willing to give up beating her up with my anger, pain, sorrow, shame and accept her brokenness with all my heart.

And then, I had to commit to walking in mercy every day to live with peace of heart and mind so that I could find the grace to create love and joy, peace and harmony in my world.

I had to stop using what happened as an excuse to not turn up in my life today. I had to quit telling myself I was a victim or even a survivor. I was a victor and I had to don my victor’s robe of glory over adversity, beauty over pain, love over fear, mercy over judgement.

I could not stand in the light if I was constantly turning off the lights of my own magnificence. Standing in my magnificence (and not judging it as tarnished, bruised, unworthy of being seen) was essential if I was to be a light and a safe haven for myself and others.

I had to, and still have to, practice radical mercy on my heart. Because magnificence does not come with a clean slate. It arrives wrapped up in everything I am, including all the wounds and scars, darkness and fears of me, myself and I.

And accepting who I am, all of me, is the path to peace of heart.

I can know myself and live confidently as myself, but to live in the wholeness of peace of heart, I must accept not just my wisdom but also my wounds, not just my light but also my dark, and not just my beauty but also my beast.

I invite you, just for today, to practice radical mercy on yourself. Stand inΒ  front of the mirror, look deeply into your eyes and say out loud, “I forgive you. I love you. I accept all of you in my heart.”

And so it is.


11 thoughts on “Acceptance in Every Peace of My Heart

    • I think we all have felt that Meena. For me, when they were small, it took a lot of personal deep diving into my essence to find a path through to honouring my anger (which was never ever really about them) so that I could express it safely. One tool my girls and I used was – throwing eggs. I would do it alone (it’s a great anger workout) and we would do it together. We’d go into the woods and throw eggs at trees, yelling and screaming while we did it. When I did it alone, I’d often sit and write all over the eggs what I was angry about, and then, hurl them (sometimes a close friend would come with me and we’d do it together). It really was a great release. I have done it with them throughout their lives — and my life too — whenever everything feels too crazy. Recently I did it with a group of women who came for an art course in my studio — we not only released the things blocking us from our creativity, we laughed and had fun! πŸ™‚

      Liked by 1 person

      • That’s a great idea
        Over here in india I have heard of a restaurant where they charge u by an hour and give u glass plates that I can break to release your anger.But the entry fee was a bit too much.i love your idea.will definitely try this Thanks a lot dear

        Liked by 1 person

  1. Pingback: Acceptance in Every Peace of My Heart – Timeless Wisdoms

  2. Radical mercy. Oh how I needed this today. We are all such human beings. All of us so welcome to the messy business of living. I love and appreciate your gorgeous heart so very very much. Your courage and voice give place to such beauty. Thank you.

    Liked by 1 person

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