Jen talked about the Universe's wake up calls. She talked about the thing she has learned this week:
"my expression is about me."
At that moment, I got an email saying BJ's son had sent me a message.
I wrote the response, but was feeling... uneasy. I needed help seeing. I asked Norm for help. I knew he knew some of the story, he wouldn't judge, and it felt like I needed to ask him.
I had him read the blog and BJ's son's response. This was his question:
"What makes you think that you can change his mind about you any more than you might be able to change anyones mind about the church?"My reply was perfectly me. Just what I needed to hear and to know.
"I don't. I don't expect him to listen or hear me, so my responding isn't about him. My words probably will be used against me. Twisted to serve the church, or his stories, or something else... My response is about me speaking up and not hiding because my voice is "useless"."At which point, he told me that he didn't need to give me any advice. I knew what to do. And I know he's right. I just needed to find that. This isn't about BJ, or his son, or the church, or anyone but me. I have long believed my voice was useless, so I never spoke up. I thought if I couldn't change the world around me, there was no reason to talk, to sing, to laugh. It has always been about everyone else... and in a backwards way about myself. Today, I can finally see in a forwards way its about me. This is a part of what I sent back:
(I'm only leaving the parts that I thought could be beneficial to others. Anything personal to BJ's son's letter, I removed.)
I appreciate you asking, and I'm grateful you sent me the message.
I can't speak for BJ and his authenticity. All I know is that he has said he is now being authentic. I trust him to speak for himself.When I finished talking with Norm, I was shaking. Whole body vibrating enough that I thought I was going to pass out. I laid down on the floor for an hour and just shook.
Having traveled the road of trying to figure out how to be authentic... it IS hard. It hurts. There is a cost. And the longer we have pretended to be something we aren't, the harder it is. The trouble with masks is when we take them off, no one recognizes us. I know many people would say authenticity is NOT worth it, and that is something we can only say for ourselves. I don't get to make that choice for anyone but me. No friend, bishop, parent, spouse can choose or decide for me... And I can't choose for them.
Authenticity is not about what you do... I would define authenticity as "doing what you believe", being who you are. Authenticity will look different for each one of us.
I'm about to give advice. You didn't ask for it. Its free. Take it for what its worth. If your dad tells you he is being authentic, believe him. If your dad tells you he wasn't happy, believe him. Listen to him. He knows himself better than you or me or anyone else.
I can't explain exactly what was happening, but my theory is that I'm coming together. A few more pieces of me that have been broken off and separated are not broken off anymore.