I Can Do Hard Things, by Susan Austin-Crumpton

“Do I prefer to grow up and relate to life directly,
Or do I choose to live and die in fear?”
                                                         Pema Chodron

I can do hard things.
I didn’t know that when I was younger. I thought it was all about being talented, special, and somehow gifted. I knew I was not those things. So, I believed I could not do hard and difficult things.

The study of Kabbalah taught me the most difficult lessons that helped me make sense of my life. I had to learn to carry both the good and the bad within me coming to trust there was Universal and Divine Wisdom within both of them. It was simply up to me to decide how to behave and how to think that determined the good or evil of the action.

I had to learn to know that in order to trust my own empowerment, I had to first make friends with my vulnerability and powerlessness.

It was not easy. I had to take apart my entire personal view of myself as well as my learned but not always healthy world view. I realized I am what I am most fearful of being, a helpless wounded and vulnerable self.

I learned and experienced myself as a reflection of all of the goodness and forgiveness of mankind and even god herself. To me God is both inner beauty and spiritual fervor and purpose reflected through me by simply being truly honest with myself. My only sin is that I do not recognize my inner “goodness.”
I seemed I had turned away from and even hid from myself and others the only thing that would really change me. That is, I am a mirror reflection of the Divine as all humans are at their core.
It seems to me that being human is an incredible gift and opportunity to receive this Divinity.  To embrace this gift within. To become aware that we are all one at our center even if we can’t see it in the actions and behaviors of others.
Maybe that is what we love and see in newborn babies? We all start out shining with goodness and vulnerability. It’s what we do with it that makes us capable of doing hard things.

Susan Austin-Crumpton
   Executive Director & Founder
   The Estuary, Inc.