Begin with this. Who you are is exactly who you are supposed to be. Where you are is exactly where you are supposed to be. You know what you should know and you are not finished knowing. You are, in every way, unbroken. You may feel motionless in a moment, whatever it is, but the road goes on and you are uniquely qualified to take it. Despite anything that the world or its inhabitants throw your way, there is nothing that you cannot handle. There is nothing we cannot come back from. We prove this every day. Our days and the length of our lives are meant to be. There is intention in our design and in the design of the world. There is beauty in what and who you are. You are meant to be and you have more control than you might think.
I used to struggle with myself a lot. Questions like, “Am I good enough” and “I don’t deserve this” were like a sickness. These doubts and the torrent of abuse that comes with them are deflating and made me want to be someone I’m not. I would avoid things that might have been joyful and instead lived “inside myself” for lack of a better term. It wasn’t until my marriage that I started to accept that I was someone worthwhile. It wasn’t that my wife simply told me I was and I believed it, she showed me that I was worth it. To say that it took work from me is an understatement. I found Judaism during all of this and it helped me come to an even better place of acceptance. That process of rebuilding came with some revealing truths that I wish I had known before. Or at least, had adhered to. I’m trying to teach these to my son.
1. We are not broken or damaged. Not now and not ever.
2. You may do the wrong thing at times but it does not mean something is wrong with you. You may make a bad choice but it does not mean that you are bad.
3. When you pass, your soul will go back to Gd who gave it.
4. You are good enough to be here and strong enough to live YOUR life.
5. Do not give in to other people’s fears. All your life, there will be people who try to put their fears on you and make you think there is something wrong with you. There isn’t.
6. Be honest with yourself but never cruel.
7. You and the world are tied. It is here for you and you for it.
8. You have the strength you need to accomplish amazing things. You are worthy of those things.
9. Be helpful but never cruel, friendly but never trapped, and do not enable the wrong things.
10. Learn to let go of harmful things, no matter what they are.
11. You get to choose how you respond.
12. You are not alone.
You are a creation. Born into the world with strength and as Billy Jonas says, “an ember remembering back to the start”. This life is here for you. Enjoy it and do great things. You deserve this. Every day, our soul returns and we thank Gd for the opportunities of life and for life itself. We are born of love and light and joy. No matter where our boat is and which direction it is facing, the oar is always in our hands. That is one of the many beautiful things about you and I. We can go backwards, change direction, or surge forward. We get to choose a great many things. A friend of mine has a Facebook profile picture that says, “Believe there is good in the world”.
The truth is that we will find what we go looking for.