Red Shoulder Hawk

Red Shoulder Hawk

Friday, October 13, 2006

Thinking about sin

My daughter thinks I worry too much. I think I'm just trying to make sure I make my best choices, and then how to recover when I either don't make the best choice, or don't let my actions follow my best choice.

I finally delivered a particular project that I took on at the beginning of the move. I lost work space, I spent my supplies budget on other things, I spent my time packing and unpacking and being in discussion and discovery with my family, and before I knew it I was two months behind, then three, and then the shame spiral kicked in and even though I finally was able to start working on the project, I couldn't face my client anymore.

That is the key component, to me, about sin: I can't face the person I'm in relationship with. I've broken the bond. Not them.

Is there a way for me to fail in a promise, and stay in relationship? To keep communicating, to keep showing up, to be my broken self, in partnership? I imagine a phone call from that place going something like this:

"How are you? How is the project coming along?"

"I'm really tired from talking with my family about all the things that they need in the new house. I don't know how I'm going to get it all done with the time and money constraints I've got. It breaks my heart a little. The project? I know I promised I'd have it delivered next week, but I still haven't been able to set up my work area. Meanwhile, I've made promises to clients who won't make any money for themselves until I finish what I'm doing for them, promises which interfere with the promise I made you. I really feel like I'm spiralling out of control, yet I don't seem able to pinpoint a place to start unravelling this situation."

I sure wouldn't want to be on the other side of that conversation. What a bunch of insulting, whiney prevarication! Huh. Perhaps this is a potential growth area for me.

A true, unconditional partner will always be ready to take me back. I am that partner for many people. There's nothing my wife can do which would make me not desire a relationship with her. Same with my children, a few relatives, and several friends (many of whom are clients, too). So I know what it takes to be ready for the other person to come in out of the cold. I know the joy of receiving someone back, of tenderly holding their brittleness as they move towards being more their true selves.

I delivered the project yesterday. My client unconditionally accepted my return, leaving me stunned at how it feels to be welcomed back after shunning myself for so long, noticing the brittleness within my own self. I noticed how uncomfortable it is to have the emotions flow around a sense of welcome rather than retribution. I noticed how healing it is, too.

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