Starting the Climb…

This is wedding week…a wonderful happy occasion with a roller coaster of emotions for me…in South African…not able to have my family and friends to celebrate with…yet yesterday I received wonderful news that my son was flying halfway around the world…more than a 36-hour trip for him…to be with me and give me away…my heart just melted into a bubble of tenderness…

I am incredibly grateful for Mr. P’s beautiful family here that took me in with open arms and hearts…the wedding is being held at his sister’s house…the most gracious host and hostess…an intimate beautiful and charming summer midmorning wedding…all the beauty that I always wanted is coming true…the wildflower bouquet…the cake that I had always dreamed of…of course, it’s chocolate with chocolate ganache for Mr. P’s tastebud approval…

I had emphatically stated for many years that I would never, ever get married again…every relationship in the past had failed horribly…no matter how hard I tried they ended leaving painful wounds that took years to heal…that was my paradigm…all I have experienced…so why in the world would I sign up for that again…but here I am… scared and happy to believe that this is the right one …at the right time…my handsome knight that kissed me awake to a new world of hope and possibilities…

I am richly blessed with a man who has persevered and loved me despite it all…all the wounds and scars I carry…Arriving two and a half years ago not expecting to get married…🤔possibly a brief interlude in time to enjoy this incredible friendship that we had found despite and probably because of the great distance between us (another story😃)…

During that time we have come through more highs and lows than some couple’s experiences in a lifetime…covid…cancer…my immersion into a new culture…divorce…retirement…and I won’t bore you with the day-to-day choppy struggles that we all sail through…and I’m still here…more in love than I have ever been in my life…and on Sunday I am making THE commitment…no matter what happens I will never regret one moment…

Enough of the warm kissy sappy syrupy dribble of sweet emotions… I am still more comfortable showing the hard shell on the outside…defenses that hide the gooey, emotional, scaredy mess that I really am..

I feel like I am starting a new adventure…(in my marriage) and my goal of health, energy, and vitality…my myriad adventures both in the natural and spiritual arenas have been numerous from living in Thailand and Alaska…and places in between…but this expedition is my personal Mount Everest…it will take a huge amount of determination and dedication to complete this formidable journey to its end…

Like the climb to Mount Everest…I have been acclimatizing myself for many years…I’ve failed numerous times on this endeavor before…even reached the peak of goal weight…I hadn’t lost the weight for myself…only to compete for my ex’s attention and love against the women of his affairs…of course it did not have anything to do with how “thin” I was…so I failed and incurred more inflamed scars to weigh me down…and stuffed my anger, feelings of betrayal and hurt…every traumatic emotion becoming trapped…creating body armor that became useful in my life…

Your unhealthy habits were just survival mechanisms that you held onto to protect yourself. You aren’t trying to be self-destructive! Your brain is just telling you that danger is imminent, so you prepare accordingly. But you just need to slowly build new, healthy habits because you aren’t in danger anymore.

Heading for First Camp

Let’s try and start unraveling the tangled mess from the beginning…

I look at these photos of when I was 2 years old, and I see innocent happiness and an unbounded child’s joy…where did she go…this sweet child…will I ever find her again…

I sit here…feeling the pain start to wrack my spirit…I am in a safe and loving environment, and I am OK…Really…this is apparently going to be part of the exploration… I didn’t want to go through this process…I really didn’t…I held the belief that if ever I opened the faucet ever so slightly…that it wouldn’t just drip out a drop at a time…but gush out so rapidly that I would drown in excruciating agony…

I am loved. | Happy Wives Club

AND

110 Love Quotes

Preparation this week is being healthy self-care of exercising and keeping a food journal…slowly and surely…my friend and support MP and I call it turtling🐢🐢🐢…

Day 216…Journey to Forgiveness

Saying Good-bye…

And in the end…he loved
February 16, 1931 – February 24, 2020

…May his heart now rest in peace…and may mine also

My Father’s Family

…quite a handsome young man that looks very happy in this photo…but as I look at this photo, I remember the frequent times that he voiced that he blamed his Mother for all the anger that he felt toward’s women…and I felt the brunt of that anger as the eldest…both emotionally and physically…and more that my mind has ever would allow me to remember…

“Forgiveness is giving up the hope that the past could have been any different.”
― Oprah Winfrey

The year that I was about 9 years old…with a family that he needed to feed and only a seasonal sawmill job…plus the promise of religious fulfillment…he put his wife…all four of his children, our German Shepherd Sheba… in a beat-up jalopy with a huge hole in the back floorboard…and with $50.00 left for Jeffersonville, Indiana…

…and there my life in the religious cult started…the abuse became more profuse there…he was either fervently and brutally religious or demonically violent…the pain traumatizing each cell in my body…until the only way to survive as not be inside of my body… in anguish and agonizing a-loneness…bleeding in my child’s soul…

…my mother was the perfect example of grace and beauty…inside and out…even in the place of her own pain..for once I had wanted to see if she remembered what had happened in a place that we had lived in Wisconsin…to this day, I don’t remember anything about that time…yet when I asked her about it…she replied that it was too painful to remember…

….Smiling on the Outside

After the age of 18…for many years I didn’t see or have much to do with my Father or any of my family…and life moved on…time moved on…as I had my own family and dealt with another abusive relationship with a cheating husband…

After finding out that my husband had an affair with my sister…all my Father could say was that… it was my fault…for I had not been a good enough wife…and the abuse was still agonizing…

Yet over the years…I realized that I did not want to continue to feel the pain and live a life less than…to continue moving forward and through was by forgiveness…forgiveness and healing is never a one-time process and it took many years of therapy…prayer…and every book that I could find…step by step…small slow steps…backwards…then forward again…day by day…year by year…the healing slowly and gradually covered the open wounds of my heart…soul…and mind…

…when I came back to Indiana in 2013…it was different now when I saw him…he was physically frail…and he was changed…altered somehow…he often talked about how sorry that he was that he was not a better father…and asked for forgiveness…on more than one occasion…with tears in his voice…not for any specific occurrence…but for a lifetime of hurting his children…

Another layer of forgiveness…I knew in my heart that I would probably never have the chance to see him again once I left for South Africa…I spent as much time with him as I could…loving him and letting him know that I forgave him…so he could have some peace…and I could also…

“Forgiveness is not a feeling: it is a commitment. It is a choice to show mercy, not to hold the offense against the offender. Forgiveness is the expression of love.” ~Gary Chapman

In my life I found that…most of the world contains good people that do the best that they can…with what they know and understand coloredand tightly bound by their life experiences…be patient and forgiving…for if they knew and understood…they would do things differently…

Image result for the world is hurting quotes

Love is still the answer…and it will always be…

The most highest and most beautiful form of love is forgiveness…

Dad, may your rest be filled with serenity in the arms of our loving heavenly Father…

your daughter, Renee