It’s been five months since I completed the last installment, and I’ve enjoyed time to ponder the next steps of this blog. These last months in my life have been extremely full—full of singing, reiki, friends, and development. I love looking back, even five months, and celebrating how much expansion there has been in a short amount of time. Life is blessedly full!
As promised at the end of The Heart Chakra, Part 2, this blog post is devoted to appreciating my family. It’s apt when speaking of the heart to express the wounding as well as the joy. Both are part of a full and rounded human experience. As you have already read, I experienced much pain in my family, and I’ve been on a journey of finding my own identity and beliefs. At the same time, they offered me so much, and I would be remiss to ignore that. My dad and I have developed a lovely relationship these past four years, and it’s important to me that he knows how grateful I am for him.
Since my parents were missionary teachers, education lived large in our home. The schools I attended (where they taught) were difficult and required much of us, especially in junior high and high school. I received an excellent education, without knowing it was excellent until much later. I’m truly grateful. Furthermore, growing up in a family where reading was considered fun, I developed a life-long love of learning and reading that continues to this day. I enjoy learning new things–fresh ways of looking at life or music. I remember conversing with my dad about this last year. He turned 80 years old this month, and he still likes to learn new things and explore new places.
Furthermore, because of my parents’ work, I received the immense gift of traveling the world and living in several countries as a child. I thus developed into a person with developmental experience of multiple cultures and world views. Because I experienced these cultures while my identity was developing, I became a person who knows deep in my experience that another way is simply different, not wrong. I don’t have judgments about other ways, or rather, I have fewer than normal (let’s be real here 😊). This openness tends to be a hallmark for most Third Culture Kids I’ve met. As most things in life, it carries negatives, but for the moment, let’s focus on the positive.
Also, the more I free myself of past trauma, the fewer triggers I have. Triggers often lead to judging others from the space of the emotional trauma, and typically lead to unfair or incorrect judgements. I certainly have done my share of that. And still do, but less and less as I resolve past issues. It’s wonderful to know that we CAN heal—it is possible. We are not doomed by our pasts . . . our pasts are the medicine that help us live our life mission.
It was cool to grow up in different countries–the highlands of Papua New Guinea, the jungle of Liberia (and I truly mean jungle), and the savannah of Ivory Coast. Having a global perspective is normal to me, and I only knew it was unusual when I moved to my passport country at 18 years old. I’m truly grateful that my parents followed their faith and spent their careers teaching in countries around the world. I’m grateful that the thought of flying to, for example, England, and taking the train somewhere in that country is as normal to me (and perhaps more) as driving my car (in the US) to meet a friend for lunch.
My parents gave me the gift of the world; they gave me the gift of being interested in and non-judgmental towards others (again, for the most part). They gave me a life of such cultural range and experience that very little surprises me or feels uncomfortable. When you add my Southern belle mother and the etiquette lessons she taught us—I have a picture of us dressed up having etiquette lessons around our dining table IN THE JUNGLE—I could eat chicken wings with my hands or attend a formal dinner, for example, and feel comfortable. I’m truly, profoundly grateful for the remarkable gift my parents gave.
I sit in awe at their courage and audacity in living the life they did. There aren’t enough words to express my admiration and respect for their choices and what their choices offered my brother and me.
There are myriad more amazing gifts my parents offered us. I could go on and on (and perhaps will at some point). Honoring whichever type of work we were called to do, instilling spirituality so deep in the bones that it can never be undone, constant jokes and hilarity . . . there’s much more where that comes from. For me, even though I have taken a different angle on spirituality that I was raised with, the devotion to spirituality has remained, along with the life passion to serve.
I hope these three heart chakra blogs have inspired you to connect with your heart, your breath, your past, your present, and your future. And sing!! Whether you’re a professional or amateur, sing!!!!!
All my love,
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Reblogged this on #JustJoyThings.
Beautifully said Jillian – my heart resounds with understanding!! xxx
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Love you, babe!!
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Love you always!! xxx