“What lies behind us and what lies before us are tiny matters compared to what lies within us.” – Ralph Waldo Emerson
Today I had a call with the counselor. My calls have gone from one hour to 30 minutes because the counselor quickly realized that her father and I could not listen in together without discord- he always insists on blaming me for something and then I go defend myself so she said ‘enough’ and this week was the first solo week of my daughter’s update on her well being.
Thirty minutes is not enough but I wanted to hear as much as possible and we started with her letters to me. Her letters this week were different and I will try to explain how. She seemed receptive to my letter and asked me questions about how I was doing or how was I working on myself. She spoke about her food (not bad at all she said), her duties as a cook on some days and her relationships with her girls and said they are more like sisters and she likes the feeling of that community. She understood my concerns about her behavior and her explanation of it – ‘To be honest, I just wanted acceptance.”
She only asked how long she’d be there once in all of her 18 hand written pages compared to about 2-3 times per page and then multiply times all the pages, well she was asking this question a lot. There was also a lot of self awareness. In the beginning I thought to myself: “she’s learning to play this game”, but the counselor said no. Indeed she has ‘shifted’. That’s when I lost it. I cried. A lot. I may actually get my daughter back one of these days.
She told me about a book she read (twice) because it touched her so much and asked that I read it and tell her my favorite parts; she shared her favorite parts with me. It is called Way of the Peaceful Warrior: A Book that Changes Lives and having read half the book in one sitting, I recommend you read it too.
Words ranged from a to z. Her attitude has changed for the better- still not all there but something shifted. She’s more verbal. More emotional. More present and all restrictions have been cleared. She joined her counselor ready to work this week and even took on extra assignments- mostly because she was bored but she did it anyways.
The counselor shared that my daughter admitted to her that she needed help. That she didn’t know how it got to be the way that it was but that yes, she needed help. And that was huge. Between noticing a change in her letters to hearing what the counselor said I finally felt 100% confident that this is where my daughter needed to be at this specific moment in time.
I’ll share some of my daughter’s favorite quotes from the book because I really liked them as well:
“It is better for you to take responsibility for your life as it is, instead of blaming others or circumstances for your predicament.”
“As your eyes open, you’ll see that your state of health, happiness, and every circumstance of your life has been in a large part, arragend by you- consciously or unconsciously.”
“Stop being proud of mediocrity”
“Anger is a powerful tool to transform old habits and repalce them with new ones.”
“To rid of yourself of old patterns, focus all your energy not on struggling with the old, but on building the new.”
Peace & Love