I don’t claim to be an expert in anything, or a relationship counselor, as so many bloggers profess to be. I read many posts from very good writers, but where are their credentials to take the reins and tell people what they should, or should not do with their lives, their writing, their values of life and love? I have recently read tons of blogs on authenticity– all taking from others ideas. How authentic is that? I write from heart, not from the pages of other bloggers and their “gifts” of insight and wisdom. I don’t sell packages of promise to my readers. I just write what I know, and what I feel, and hope that it may touch someone.
I am a people person. I know people. I have made it my business to know people. For over thirty years I have worked with people who suffer from mental illness and or severe physical disabilities. This is what I know. This is what I love to do. I have learned how to empower, but most importantly, I have learned to listen, to feel empathy, and to put my own judgements aside. I am in awe of those I serve. They are the experts. They have learned how to be “authentic” : they have empowered me to look inside of myself. Their gifts are invaluable to me.
I could cite many examples of my clients and how they have overcome obstacles you cannot imagine. They have suffered years of abuse, been ostracised– cast out from their families and support systems, but yet, they still survive. They know… they yearn for a normal life, a happy life, and they find it within themselves. They take responsibility for their lives.
The journey I have taken in all these years with these people, will soon be coming to an end. In retrospect, I see real authenticity they have achieved as they became successful in their lives despite the odds. They didn’t need to read blogs, or race to the nearest book store for a book on self-growth. They reached inside themselves. They saw their own light– not one reflected off of a case worker, shrink, or me, for that matter. They have come to the place that tells them that they are worth it, and they can overcome. They see their value as human beings, and with that comes a peace I am still striving to reach.
I once asked one of my clients how she appears to be so happy, and she said, “I take time to listen. I take time to look around me. I take the time to be thankful.” The power is in her. She recognised it. The power is in all of us. We have our own light. We have to take responsibility for our own happiness. Whatever that thing is that shows us the way, we all have it. It’s there for the taking. All we have to do is be silent, and listen. When we do that, we know who our authentic self is. We don’t need books and tapes, or expensive programs to find out who we are. Sit, observe the present, and look inside, and just release and let go!