May 5, 2009
One of my readers, Tiffani, referred me to a wonderful blog about a woman, Stephanie Nielson, who has been blogging about family, life and spirituality for many years. Recently, she and her husband almost died in a fatal plane crash that left her with burns throughout much of her face and most of her body. She exists today in Utah with her four children and her husband, who she lovingly refers to as Mr. Nielson.
It was heart wrenching to read about her struggles with her failing self image and post-crash depression. It was also interesting to read of someone’s life online realizing that I resonate with her open vulnerability and large online following. It’s difficult going through hard life experiences and yet continue writing with an open, candid and truthful heart.
Since beginning this website in March 2005, I recovered from an eating disorder, dated a few good men, traveled to Hawaii, India, Thailand, Malaysia and New Zealand, moved from San Francisco to Sacramento, quit my corporate job, founded a nonprofit, became a freelance writer, got engaged and gave birth to my first son. In those moments of transition, it was definitely hard to write and the more I thought of the thousands of people who read this site, the more I wanted to hold back sometimes give up writing altogether.
But I didn’t quit.
I kept writing.
And as I continue to write today I am captivated by the philosophical depthness behind what makes us all intrigued by those who inspire us. Reading Stephanie’s blog made me recall on one of my deepest fears as a human being – the idea of being loved even when you feel you have nothing to offer in return.
While I’ve had many men love me in my lifetime, I was never certain that they’d still love me if my face burned off or if my legs became paralyzed. Loving someone unconditionally requires an extreme level of acceptance, an immense amount of patience and unending supply of understanding. Naturally, when we think of our life partner we hope they present themselves in the best package in the initial meeting. You don’t want to see the flaws, the failures or the faults but eventually, imperfections always present itself.
When I first met David, I was admittedly unsure whether I could handle all that he was: after all, I came into the relationship without children, without an injury and without past baggage.’ But when I sincerely looked into my heart,
I realized that my idea of love’ was being tested for who knows what the future may bring. I may one day receive a fatal injury or become seriously depressed. We shouldn’t judge who we feel is deserving of our love instead, we should love without justification.
We never know what lies ahead in our lives.
But the purity of our love, the authenticity of our hearts and the truth in our actions is all that matters.
What lies within..is all that matters.
That is what Stephanie’s blog inspired in me today. Thank you for reading.
Journal Pictures: May 5, 2009
We saw this cardboard cut out of Elvis Presley at Sac State University.
Supporting Shanaya at the Miss Black Sacramento pageant.
She is one of our C.O.R.E. club members.
David does the funniest things. While I was in the bathroom the other morning
he made this sign (with a pen and a torn Marine Corp sticker) and
placed it in Christian’s hand, almost like he was protesting!
When I came out I
laughed so much.