A couple days ago, Aly got home from school and I was in my bedroom writing an email and just finishing up the last couple hours of the day, closing loops and ironing out details. I looked at her and waved her into the bedroom to lay next to me and tell me about her day.
This isn't unusual. Usually we'll ask how their day was, but today was going to be different.
She said that she was scheduling classes for next year and began to cry when she was in the hall at school. She was making light of it as she told me, but as she laid next to me, I asked her why she was crying. To make a long story short, we began to talk about the gift of ambition and the curse of perfectionism. I was trying to let her know that performance and people-pleasing would kill her if she didn't make room for failure in her life. As I was talking to her, I had a flashback to my past and the formation of my soul, my story.
I decided to share how seeds sown in my early years don't actually grow and show their beautiful or ugly fruit until later on in life, but make no mistake, they will bear their fruit in time.
As I shared about the seed of pornography and the times of exposure throughout my childhood into my teens, I began going to a new place with her sharing details and textures of the story that I had left out until she was "of age". There was a point where I began to cry revisiting the wounds and the ways the Enemy was seeking to take me out even before I got started. I was trying to share with her how Satan isn't interested in causing a collapse this week, or next year, he is very patient. It's actually his most scary quality in my opinion. He is in no rush. I told her that he might be hatching a plan to take her out when she was 36 and she finally cracked and had a mental breakdown. Perfectionism seems to get you good grades and great grants and amazing opportunities...so it's easy to see it as a positive trait that affords you great rewards and awards. But the underbelly of the matter is that it seeks to ultimately destroy you.
I just wanted to say that sharing stories with my girls and listening closely to their stories is where truth is best transferred and transmitted. It can bring transformation where there is the threat of deformation.
After I shared my story, Aly shared a story she had never told me...a very private and embarrassing area of sin she battles with. She cried with a mix of shame and freedom. I was as precious a moment as we've every experienced together. It's amazing how story softens the conscience and creates pockets of possibility, possibility because of a permission that is granted in the telling of one's story. Story begets story.
She said something to me about summer camp last year that I will never forget. She said that she told her counselor that she wanted to be a "Vulnerable Leader" and that she felt that she wasn't being that in her life because she wanted to appear more together than she really was. I loved her desire...it is my desire. To be a vulnerable leader.
It's a moment I'll never forget. Thank you God for these precious gifts of life in it's purest form. Edenic.