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Coming home

We cannot help how we are predisposed to being. But this coming home to ourselves can sometimes be painful. I strongly believed I am a full-fledged, 100% loner by nature. My motto was the less people in my life, the happier am I.

There was an odd thing going on though. A strange unexplainable pattern I kept seeing. My closest friends would have ridiculously large families. Their families would even be the kind that ‘adopts’ friends (that would be me) into their life and treats them exactly like family. I’ve been in three relationships. All three, without exception, had large families and also had enormous circle of friends. It gets worse, this pattern. Of all the gurus to become a devotee to, I chose (fell in love with) one who is the epitome of ‘large group of people’. She’s the only Guru in the history of the planet who hugs everyone around the world and calls them all Her children! Still, I paid no mind to all that repetitive, consistent, what I call, anomaly. I was obstinate, determined and took pride in being a loner. My inner voice would always say, ‘Hmph! Better them than me! What a headache dealing with all that!’….Well, until this morning…

There I was sitting in the parking lot of ShopRite supermarkets weeping. I pulled out my cell phone and sent this text, “You broke me. Finally. I am here. For life…”. The recipient of the text is the President of the organization I have been volunteering for. It is the only pro-bono Filipino American legal defense in the United States. I’ve lost count how many times I’ve wanted to quit. Why? It is dealing with a heck of a lot of people. All the time. A bag of politics, drama and deadlines. I knew subconsciously the commitment of being with the organization meant I’d have to give up my loner badge and privileges. No more of the times when I come when I want to and quit when I please; my identity and rabbit hole for four decades.

Like someone who has but a few seconds before they die, my life flashed right before me in my car. It all came together. The once thought of anomalies shape shifted into pointers of the truth long denied. Snippets of the highly charged, intense four conversation with the President the night before went in and out of my head. His passionate words of “This is my vocation! I can’t quit!” shot straight right through my heart and finally, shattered my mind into silent acquiescence. Tears rolled down my face at the realization of what was taking place within me.

Be careful what you love because you will inevitably manifest that. Motherhood is the ultimate act of love, the job for life. That is why I am madly in love with Ammachi. She hugs the leper as lovingly as the saintly devotee. She carries cinder blocks to build homes for the widows in India and sleeps all but maybe two hours a night in order to answer letters, travel and do all that a mother, who takes on humanity as children, you can imagine would be doing. And so, there it was: my heart breathes and lives as a mother. It goes where it is needed most and gives what is asked of it. Decisions and choices are not governed by comfort or security. It longs and aches to serve selflessly. Yes, this is my vocation, too. No more quitting my heart then  -- for I am home.
~ by resident writer, Marie Aunio


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