How I Put My Father’s Absence In A Healthy Perspective, And You Can, Too.

I am not writing this blog to bash my father, for he was one of my first and greatest teacher. But, I know for some people, today is a bit of a struggle. I may not have the same experience as you. Still, I know what it is like to be on an emotional roller coaster of anger, confusion, disappointment, and resentment towards someone who helped create you.

My father was not there for birthday celebrations, prom dates, or other significant events. Instead, I have memories of a few heated conversations and my father telling me that he would disown me like the Japanese.

I wanted my father to be someone he was not and was not ready to be. But, despite all my mother endured, she never called my father outside of his name or wished she hadn’t met him. She, too, uncovered treasures out of a potentially traumatic experience. And she shared her life experiences with us so that we could have a better life.

According to my mother, my father showed a different side of himself after my birth. I am the three children they had together. My mother said our father drank a lot and used drugs. I remember my father lying across the kitchen floor and being on trial for telling someone that he abused my mother.

On the other hand, I have some good memories. One day, my brother and I were teasing some neighboring children. They called our bluff and chased us from outside of our apartment to the top floor of our apartment building. Thankfully, my father answered opened our apartment, thereby scaring the children away. In addition, my father showed a gentle side by feeding me bread and giving words of encouragement after I swallowed a fishbone.

After 4 and 1/2 years of feeling like a punching bag, a single parent, and a receptacle for voiced pain, my mother chose to leave my father and make a better life for herself and their three children. At the time, I was months short of my 5th birthday, the eldest boy 3, and the baby boy just turned one.

Over the years, I struggled with my emotions and feelings towards my father. I was most upset about seeing my mother struggling to provide for three growing children. The infrequent phone calls I had with him over the past 40 years left me feeling more angry, confused, and disappointed until I realized that unhealed wounds could rob us of the gift of life.

So, I have reasons to be angry, but I refuse to because my father was and still is one of my first and greatest teachers.

Here are six things that helped me to have a healthier perspective towards my father.

  1. I am not the cause and never was the cause of my father’s pain and his reaction to his pain. A child is never responsible for an adult’s behavior.
  2. I realized how destructive unhealed wounds could be. I was not the cause of my father’s absence. He is the one who missed out on the most beautiful things life offers — -seeing children process life and develop into adults.
  3. I realized I needed to be an active parent. I know what it’s like to not to have my father’s unconditional love, guidance, and protection. Every day I am grateful for the two spiritual beings God has blessed me to have.
  4. Address my emotions and feelings. I knew my father couldn’t be there for me because something else had his attention. My pain is not my children’s pain. I knew my father’s substance abuse put me at risk of seeking external comforters for unhealed wounds. The signposts in my life(including interactions with my father) continued to confirm that I needed to heal my wounds.
  5. Hold firm that family and parenting is a team effort. No one should have to do all the work alone.
  6. Rely more on my heavenly father to guide me. Despite our circumstances (raised by a single parent), we had everything we needed and more.

I am stronger and wiser because of my father. I refuse to continue the cycle of pain. Instead, I am creating a cycle of love from the inside out. Everything I experience helped me have the convictions I have. Therefore, I am not gloomy this day and have not been for some time. I am grateful for the support I had growing up and continue to have as an adult. I am at peace about the relationship my father and I have.

I am grateful for the fathers who are being fathers even though they did not have one and the mothers who are doing the best they can without the father’s support. 

I encourage others who didn’t have their father to:

  1. Focus on what you have and work with that.
  2. What did you learn from not having your father in your life, and how can you be and do better with what you learned? 
  3. Take your pain and do the opposite. 

I am not here to minimize anyone’s experience but to help in maximizing our experiences for the greater good. 

What do you need to do to put your relationship with your father in a healthier perspective? What did you learn to do and not to do?

Make this lifetime great! You deserve a life of joy and peace despite your circumstances.

If you like this blog, please share and subscribe to my quarterly newsletters on healing from the inside out, health tips, and living out your purpose.

Timika

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How To Keep Antagonists In A Healthy Perspective?

Why did she treat me that way? Why is he not supporting me? I feel like you don’t want me to succeed in life? 

Often, my mother told us that “everyone has a role to play.” Yet, sometimes, it’s easy to lose sight that both protagonists (supportive people)and antagonists (nonsupportive people) help us live our truths. 

During my childhood, I started seeing the world as one big movie, which helped me to be more observant instead of judgmental. A major component of my healing was realizing everyone had a role to play in my life. People were helping me on a deeper level.

So, many people, including Jesus, experienced obstacles to living out their truths. What about the lives of great leaders such as Martin Luther King, Nelson Mandela, Mahatma Gandhi, presidents (John F. Kennedy, Abraham Lincoln), teacher Lou Ann Johnson (Dangerous Minds), and principal Joe Clark (Lean On Me)?

Take a moment and glance over your life. Can you list a few antagonists and protagonists? I bet you came up with a few at least two or three of each. So, the point is that no matter what, we will encounter people who help us accomplish our goals and others who seem to place barriers  (disbelief, inconsistency, harm us emotionally, mentally, physically, sexually, spiritually, don’t do what we ask them to do, tell our secrets, make fun of us, create violent acts, betray us, and others) no matter what we do or say.

So, how do we respond to our antagonists? Our response starts in our minds. How do you perceive life and the people in it? 

Here are a few questions to ponder?

  1. Do you believe that everyone has a part to play in your life? Know that you will have people who will not support you. 
  2. Do you believe that you cause people to be upset with you or “fight against you?” Often what people do has nothing to do with us. However, people come into our lives with their experiences and perceptions. Your success may remind them of their doubts and insecurities. 
  3. Does your happiness depend on who supports you or not? The people against you may start supporting you, and the people who supported you may no longer do so. Say no thank you to the emotional rollercoaster and keep believing in yourself and your dream.
  4. Do you believe the universe is out to get you? See the distractions (help to increase your confidence and conviction to purpose) for what they are. Recently, I relearned that everything works together for my good. I have no enemies, just people who are helping me to be more creative, efficient, and perseverant.

Here are a few movies to help clarify the antagonist role. I hope I didn’t give away too much information about the movies if you haven’t seen them. 

  1. Antagonists help us to see we have the skills to succeed in life? Think about the movie, The Last Dragon. Eventually, with the help of Sho’nuff, Leroy realizes the person he was searching for was himself. 
  2. Antagonists help us realize that we are somebody. For example, a small-time boxer thought he was a nobody. Apollo Creed brought out the confidence that Rocky always had.
  3. If Cinderella had not experienced unequal treatment from her stepmother and stepsisters, would she have gone to the ball to meet her Prince and future husband?

We all have antagonists in our life. When we no longer see our antagonists as enemies and more as the jumpstarters to our truth, we are no longer the victim but the student of life. We learn who we are. I do not minimize our trials and tribulations, but I don’t want to make our struggles and antagonists our primary focus. If we focus on people’s actions and inactions, we get stuck. Our primary focus is to carry out our mission in life (your heart’s desire). I don’t want anyone to be stuck, for living is moving forward in life. 

Thanks for reading! If you found this article helpful, please share it with others.

Timika

MSN BSN RN, Integrative Nutrition Health Coach, ACE Fitness Instructor, CDCES

P.S. I would love for you to join my community of being bent on using our experiences as stepping stones to our divine purpose, healing from the inside out, and achieving and sustaining optimal health. Subscribe to @timikaschambers.com by clicking the link below.

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Blaming Yourself Is Not The Answer

I’m sure you have heard the phrase forgiveness is for you and not the other person. Sometime after my childhood sexual abuse secret was out, I realized anger, guilt, resentment, shame, and their magnetizing companions were a waste of energy and time.

Nursing school was one of my many signposts that confirmed there was a never way of living. After learning about resilience, I said, “I am resilient. I learned about conditioning my mind (Pavlov) and how to be my best self as possible. I was on my way to self-actualization, and many great people experienced unwanted events as a child. I learned I had a voice, and I could teach people how to be healthy and prevent things from happening to them. I also learned about the devastating effects of stress (anger, guilt, and other potentially toxic emotions if we permit them to linger.

Often, life teaches us theory before experience. Later in my 20’s, I experienced what the world calls survivor’s guilt after learning that many people who experienced childhood sexual abuse turned to external comforters (alcohol, drugs, sex, and others) and were suffering. I felt I accomplished many of my dreams and pondered why me?

Thankfully, life has also brought me full circle in understanding that we go through things to help people find their healing path. Thus, forgiveness serves as a win-win.

I realize again that there is no reason to feel guilty. As a child, I had every right to:

  1. believe what the two family members did was not my fault
  2. believe someone else’s pain is not my fault
  3. experience true love since I knew what love was not.
  4. Succeed in life (to do the things I love without feeling guilty).

There is no reason to imprison ourselves for something someone else did. We become so others can become. People need light to show them the way out of pain (darkness). We don’t need to struggle and keep carrying baggage (pain) into generations.

When we know we have a right to be free and experience love, we do not settle for anything else. We are not better than others. We are living our truth.

Thank you for reading my post!

Make this lifetime great!

Timika

MSN BSN RN, Integrative Nutrition Health Coach, ACE Fitness Instructor, CDCES

P.S. I would love for you to join my community of being bent on using our experiences as stepping stones to our divine purpose, healing from the inside out, and achieving and sustaining optimal health. Subscribe to @timikaschambers.com by clicking the link below.

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