And so every experience,
no matter how painful or beautiful,
eventually led back to my heart.
It didn’t matter how long
I put off the inevitable prayer
Every single time I found my way
to that quiet prayer
and the immediate respite in
the instant recentering.
It didn’t matter that much of life
remained messy and parts
of the unfolding story would
most likely bring with them
a tenderness almost too raw to bear.
All of it eventually ended up
in this place.
What looked like a dead end
to the path less taken
turned into more of
a vertical journey within,
and becoming even more connected
with God and with my own
There was a gratitude beyond words
for each tiny piece of truth
that added to an unshakeable knowing —
the remembrance of my very essence
that could never be broken —
a tender space
where there had once been
The tenderness found
in that first moment of surrender
initiated me into the delicate process
of walking through the most
It taught me to hold
and let go of all that is
unhealed and unresolved
in me and in the world.
It offered a glimpse into our creative,
resilient human nature
that finds a way to look
a little deeper
for beauty and hope
and a gentler path.
And so I continued to write —
not so much for the words anymore
but to feel the connection
with my soul
at a time when real connection
was precious and rare
and words seemed to fall short.
If I couldn’t be heard
then I would listen.
I would turn frustration into
I would take the deep sadness,
and I would hold it —
forever if necessary.
And if this tender ache could be
deepened, I would find a way.
Maybe it would lead to a new outer
something a little more sacred
Most likely, but maybe not.
It was my best shot.
It was one more last try —
one more time
Perhaps the most painful lesson
on the journey
was allowing things to be
It was a little different than
giving in. It was definitely not
giving up., but I had to learn
to hold a place for all that was unsettled —
trusting in previous lessons learned
about truth and love and the fluidity
of all states —
knowing beyond all doubt that
there was tenderness in this place.
I learned that in order to retain the delicate
reconnection with my true Self,
there was to be a clean cut
with all that was of false light.
There were moments of extreme grief
and disbelief as one piece after another,
all that was holding my heart from
it’s true calling was torn back.
I did my best to gather up anything
that might help in retracing my steps
and somehow returning with some kind
of treasure to share —
which helped to create a sense
of meaning in the pain.
Eventually, even carefully gathered treasures
had to be set down — for a while,
adding to the already immense grief
I didn’t know if my heart could bear.
But it was at that point I began to
understand tenderness and
compassion and grace
And I knew I could never
I learned, out of necessity,
the skill of holding an intention
while letting go at the same time.
It was this delicate balance
of holding and letting go
that gave me the stamina
to do what felt absolutely impossible —
to love my way straight through
all that was painful
and turn it into the most tender
It took a strong kind
brave souls who had prepared
to hold love and shine light
above all else —
daring to stand apart from the crowd
though their hearts ached —
honoring and assisting the difficult task
of evolution —
the delicate transformation
It was disheartening to surrender
to the idea that love of truth
and the desire to see and protect
one’s own true spirit
and that within others had gotten a bit
Sometimes sacred things got mixed up
on the road to tenderness.
Sometimes darkness found its way in
where there was wounding,
And it took a while to let go of the idea
that moving further away from
true unity based on united sovereign souls
could ever lead anywhere good.
No, in the end, darkness and separation
had to be seen for what it was–
looked straight in the face
Parts of Self desperately hated,
and previously entwined with the dark
had to be embraced.
I found there were many
forks in the road,
many places to choose
to walk where there is
where pain is held, honored
and transformed again and again —
each time leaving a little more space
for the one thing strong enough
to balance the traces of pain inevitably
left over from often difficult journeys,
the one thing strong enough to hold all
of the pieces
of an authentic life —
the space within our hearts.