NEXT009 When the Roles Are Flipped

Posted on : 23-04-2011 | By : Lynn | In : Leadership

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The Roles I’m referring to as in mentor/mentoree/disciple/student or father/mother/child and not those yeasty floury things that you use to mop up sauces!  I believe that the Divine Guidance in my life has a great sense of humor and that many times I just don’t “get” the joke until I’m way inside of what is happening (p.s. I don’t think this is what is meant by an “inside joke”). Perhaps the mysterious has its own form of humor that roams around the bounds of what is understood. In fact, I can almost guarantee it.

For instance, take the case of me because I’ve always been someone who has sought out the mentor/teacher who I could follow and learn from. In my early quest days I would always look for the string in the perspective mentor/teacher’s make-up that I could pull to unravel the truth of the human behind the facade.  You could say that trust was a huge issue with me. In spite of myself, I stumbled upon some really helpful and good mentors and teachers in my life.  Two of them made a huge impact in the direction that my life was headed in my mid-to-late twenties.  One was a long-time therapist who was not only wise and loving but had a great sense of humor. It was this person who started the healing process of my shattered self-esteem.  A few years after my therapist, I met my dear friend who walked me through the ins and outs of co-dependency and its recovery program. That is the friend I’ve blogged about who is under hospice care now. So here are two people who have been very important to me as mentors and guides through life who are now both incapacitated.  I learned earlier this year that my therapist has Alzheimer’s.  This person who had been such a help to me, who held all my stories now has a disease that disables her capacity for remembering (among other things). And then, of course, there is my friend in hsopice.

I realized this afternoon when my hospice friend called me to help “talk her down” from a family drama that she knew she could blow way out of proportion, that our roles had flipped  long before her illness cemented the path she is on now.  Somewhere along the way I had grown up enough that I am able to stand on my own two feet and feel confident about the choices that I have made and continue to make as well as being able to re-gift the experience, strength and hope that has been given to me so generously.   Ultimately, I believe this capacity to learn, heal and give back is what we are all searching for when we look up to someone else.  A healthy mentor/teacher relationship is one that allows for the capacity of growth and expansion and challenges us to step into well-made shoes of experience, understanding and wisdom for our life’s journey.

Listen well to the yearning in your heart, for the keys to the kingdom are locked inside.

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