This life I was blessed with two brothers. One arrived 15 months after I did and the next 11 and a half years later. I have learned so much watching them grow up. I was recently reflecting on the relationship I have with the older of my two brothers and how special the relationship we have with our siblings can be.
As I felt the impulse to write, I realised this letter is much bigger than the brothers in my nuclear family. I now have many men in my life who have shown me that it is possible to be a tender and vulnerable man, and that to be this way is a true strength, not a weakness. These men have reminded me of the sweetness and tenderness I felt with my own brothers when they were small. In essence, although inspired by my brothers, and addressed to the older of my two brothers, this is also a letter to my dad, my male friends, my granddad, my uncles and all men and boys… all my brothers.
Dearest big little brother,
I know how strong you are and I know what makes you the man you are today. Although I did not take too kindly to your arrival, once trying to sweep you out of your cot with a broom, I did get used to you and I was very happy to have you around. We had many, many great times together as children. You were so funny, brave and cheeky as a child. We both faced many challenges as we grew up; despite this you have been able to hold onto your playfulness today.
I came into the world screaming and did not stop… I get the sense that I did not embrace coming in to the world. When I look at baby pictures of myself I see a very worried and unhappy baby. In contrast, you always had a smile on your face and barely made a peep. Our mum still talks about how different you and I were as babies. I was the ‘screeching nightmare’ and you were the easy, placid and sweet one. I do remember that nothing seemed to bother you at all – you had a solid strength that I admired. You embraced the world from day one and I felt safe when you were around. You made things feel easy and I wondered what I was so worried about. I feel like you were sent to be my brother to show me how I could have this too.
You were always so tough, strong and brave. Sometimes when we would fight, you would hurt me. Even though you were younger, we both knew you would always win when it came to a fight (and you always did). It was no fun when I was fighting you, but if I needed help it was so reassuring to know you were there for me. I knew that no matter how much you pretended to not care, you never wanted to see me get hurt. You also knew that I always had your back. Although I was not tough and strong like you, I was brave and I would do whatever I could to keep you safe.
Unfortunately it was not long before I found out that we would not always be able to protect each other. I can feel how we both shut down, in our own way, as a result of how hurt we were by some of the things we went through together. When our parents divorced you became so hard and tough, I felt like you shut everyone out. This was different to the natural resilience you were born with. Although you were born super-strong, in the beginning you were also open and tender. Looking back, I can feel how you protected yourself by shutting down. You made out that you did not care but I always knew deep down that you hurt, just like I did.
I realise now that it has been hard for me to understand what you have experienced as you have grown into a man. I think this is because we both shut down in different ways. You pretended to not care and I put on a happy face and exploded at intervals when I could no longer maintain the facade. We were doing the same thing in our own way.
Growing up, I observed that there were differences between what was OK for you and what was OK for me. You seemed to instinctively know that you weren’t allowed to play with dolls or wear pink. You weren’t supposed to cry or show that anything hurt you, while I was allowed to play with whatever toy I wanted and could wear any colour of the rainbow.
Remember when we used to play ‘executives’? It is so funny to look back on. Even the roles we played then were so stereotyped. You were the CEO in your grand, makeshift patchwork office made of sheets and boxes with Golden Books on the shelves, while your sisters played secretary and brought you mud pies and ‘tea’. It seems obvious now that the messages we were being fed about who we were supposed to be and the roles we would be expected to play were being received loud and clear by us then.
For a couple of years it was just you and me – not boy and girl – but it wasn’t long before things changed. Although I have always known that you love me there have been many times when I have felt judgement and scorn for me as a girl and a woman. If I ever called you a girl it was guaranteed to make you angry. You often told me I ran like a girl, kicked like a girl, cried like a girl… and even though this is exactly what I was, I knew it was always an insult. Later on I saw and felt the way you and your friends looked at and treated women and at times it made me sad to feel how my sweet, lovely brother had learned to become detached and cold.
I knew that you were not naturally like this. I knew that in truth you respected women and saw them as your equal, but… the world was not set up for that. The world showed you that women were to be used, ogled and controlled. I knew that you became tough and strong, and shut down to how you really felt, to fit in.
It became obvious that you cared about what people thought more than you ever let on. I always knew anytime you hurt someone it wasn’t the true you. It was the actions of a hurt little boy trying to cope in the best way he knew how.
Remember when our little brother came along? He was so beautiful and sweet. He was not as good at putting on the tough guy act. We were all so much bigger and felt like we had to protect him. He wasn’t afraid to cry… he even loved watching Cinderella and he didn’t care if anyone thought that was weird.
You were so gentle with him, but I could tell that his sweetness scared you… it scared me too. I realised it would be much easier for me to have another brother who acted tough and strong all the time. Our little brother reminded me how vulnerable and tender men really are. He also reminded me that this beautiful and vulnerable way of being is often shut down, as the world is not made to support men to be themselves. I look back now and can see I was afraid that he would get so hurt he would change who he was to fit in or protect himself.
You did your best to teach our little brother to be tough but I think you secretly admired the way he did what he liked and wasn’t afraid to show his feminine side. I never realised until today – as I wrote this letter – just how strong our little brother really is… and always has been.
For me, growing up with two brothers has been precious. It has allowed me to better understand what many men and boys go through as they make their way in the world. It is amazing to see you today and feel who you really are without needing you to play a role or be tough or strong.
It has been awesome to feel you relax in my company as I allow myself to accept you exactly as you are, let go of the way I need you to be and the roles I expected you to play. I know that I have been able to do this for you as I have been re-learning how to do this for myself – after all, this was the way we were when we were very small. I no longer need anything from you… but I have never appreciated you more.
Your little big sister
Inspired by the work of Serge Benhayon and Universal Medicine.
By Leonne Sharkey, Melbourne.
Published with permission of my brothers.
Men and expression – echoes from behind the wall
My Sister and I
I love this too, so simple but very powerful.
I cried when I read this letter and all the comments, releasing lots of childhood hurts. Thank you.
It has been said that it isn’t about perfection, that it can’t be, and this blog and the exchanges and comments show this – that a commitment to honesty and love, to expressing love and to continuing to learn is all that is required. I am so very deeply touched and astounded by the depth of expression in your blog and update. I feel that from here I cant but choose more honesty, openness and love in how I communicate with my family and that keeping things as they are and ‘playing safe’, (i.e. holding back love) is no longer an option.
Absolutely Julie. Well said.
Having read this blog and comments and what has evolved since the love letter to your brother, it is truly inspiring to see the changes that can occur when we let go of the hurts and express lovingly what’s been held in the body. It is a confirmation of the power of our Love and you have shown, LS, in your willingness to be open and honest it is possible for relationships to turnaround. Thank you, I can feel for myself it is time to become honest with what I am holding onto when it comes to sibling relationships.
I love that you have been able to celebrate your brother in this way and really express your Love. I’ve not had a great relationship with my brother till now, but know there is a wealth of Love in my heart when I think of him these days and how beautifully sensitive he is. Thank you for sharing Leonne.
A very beautiful sharing Leonne of your relationships and continued appreciation. This is opening up an opportunity for appreciation of my sisters, something that I have over looked. Thank you.
Awesome Leonne and what a gift to your brothers and all the men in the world. It has touched me deeply, as I realise too just how tender and gentle my brother is and how he has put on a huge amour to protect himself. It is so beautiful when we can see through the protection and meet them again in their truth, as delicate beings who deserve the same care and respect women do and have the same right to express their tenderness. Thank you.
I felt the same Rowena, deeply touched and it made me ponder on my own relationship with my brother and the deeply caring man he is. Thank you Leonne for this beautiful moment of reflection.
Deeply touching letter Leonne. The gift of honesty and tenderness that you share is so healing for all. Assisting us in recognising the roles we play that keep us from connecting to the love and tenderness that we all are. Your writing has certainly given me the opportunity to reflect and feel. So lovely thank you.
This is an amazing revelation on how we can just be ourselves with everyone, family, friends, work colleges etc if we but allow it.
Great point Amina. This extends to everybody, not just close family. As I am learning to allow the tenderness with myself I am opening to seeing other’s tenderness and beauty, even in my work colleagues on a busy day and the people pushing past me on the tube. The tenderness is there but simply masked and protected. It feels so great to not react to the roughness by carrying an inner knowing that this is not who people truly are.
This blog and its supporting comments stayed with me the whole day yesterday whilst spending time with extended family, and I felt the richness of every opportunity to connect afresh in spite of some of the rockier times we have had together. In fact the whole day served me exquisitely as a reflection of the remarkable life changes that have occurred since I started working with Serge Benhayon and Universal Medicine. I am deeply appreciative.
Beautifully said Matilda. I so look forward to meeting my extended family and, thanks to my work with Universal Medicine, I can be more loving with them than ever before.
I loved this line too, it is so true. I am learning to do this with my younger brother and it is changing our relationship as I let go of how I think I should be with him and allow him to be who he naturally is.
True love beautifully expressed.
What a lovely letter you wrote your brother LS, you are and always have been VERY strong when defending yourself just with words! I admired your strength in this area more than you know although you didn’t always choose your timing and victims wisely. You said what you felt and meant what you said and then shut the door on any further discussion. You may not have always been right but you stood up for yourself, which was always my weakness, I would take it all in and l let it fester and then when it got too overwhelming I walked away. Walking away just caused unbelievable pain for all those I loved so much, but I just didn’t know how to be me or who I was for that matter, I was trying to be what was expected of me. I don’t believe in fighting, yelling where children can hear, you may not know it but I did stand up for you all but you wouldn’t realise it. I felt that I was always in the middle and it was my own fault, no one else is to blame. I often said to myself that I wished I were more like you, you at times made me feel like the child! I adore you, I love beyond life my children and I am so happy and proud of them, I am so happy you are all finding your way in life and that along the way I have learnt treasures from all of you. My heart just swells to breaking when I think of you all, I am such a Blessed mother, thank you for being the woman you are LS, you are beyond your years, an old soul. Your smile and laughter is contagious and you light up a room when you walk in. Thank you LS for your love, forgiveness, and sharing special moments with me. I think you understand me more than I do myself at times, I am just so BLESSED. xxxxx
Wow Mum – awesome to feel you express yourself in these comments!
Serge Benhayon recently presented that god does not forgive because he does not judge. This rang so true for me.
I feel that I am beginning to let go of the sometimes very harsh judgements I have held against myself and others (including you). That kicks forgivenesses’ butt and lets so much more love in my life and relationships.
Yes I have always been very outspoken and I could use words to cut people down like a weapon when I lashed out from my hurt,s but this is far from what I know true loving expression to be. I am now relearning to express the truth with love again. When I express the truth with love and honouring where others are at (as I did in this letter to my brother) my words have unbelievable power.
This is something we could all do as children before we shut down. This is something we can all connect to. This is something you can connect to (and I have watched you do it on more than one occasion).
Thank you for your beautiful words – I am pretty awesome. Isn’t it great that I can claim that now? 🙂
Writing the love letter has given me an opportunity to appreciate the beautiful family I chose to be born into, and the amazing parents I chose to reflect exactly what was needed for me to grow. Yes we all made mistakes, some huge ones in there, but we all did the best we could at the time. There is so much love between us and we have the power to stop holding back and start expressing it. That is worth celebrating.
These last few years I have felt I can be much more honest, open and loving with you and it has been wonderful.
I can feel your gorgeous essence and the truly powerful and loving woman that you are. You certainly deserve your own love letter!
You are precious beyond belief and you are worth taking care of and nurturing. The soul doesn’t look back, and your inner heart will never stop asking you to choose love. I can feel this for you and I can feel this for me.
I love you so very much. Leonne
Wow. The truth that every relationship is an offering, that can go as deep as we allow. Words so sweetly and honestly shared. Thank you.
Thank you Leonne for your gracious reply, I found that in sharing my faults and weakness cut the ties that had bound me. I feel liberated, loved, energised and encouraged by you and by the lovely message from Michelle McWaters, THANK YOU Michelle.. For several years I didn’t feel worthy to have such wonderful children. I now realise my relationships didn’t work for me as I didn’t think anyone would want or love me because I felt unwanted and unloved as a child. It is so important that we don’t project negativity, and take care in what we say and allow our children to hear and watch etc. for example: My dear father used to tell me as a young child that I would get divorced just like my mum had, I was only around eight at the time. For me when someone came along and gave me love I took it, but really didn’t know how to give it back. Through the relationship I floundered as I couldn’t love back the same way, I just didn’t feel it and I hurt so many by shutting down and running from my shame. Thing is, Shame, pain ,fear and self judgement just run right along with you! It never got easier there were some lessons learned along the way and some progress made but now I have found a point in my life where I feel strong, I feel so very loved, I can love freely, I am worthy of love and good things in my life but I have to work at it every day by loving and accepting the person I am, she is the person I want my relationships built on, she is the person who wants to share the gifts I have with others and accept with love and thankfulness the many gifts from those who wish to share with me because I now know I am worthy, I am valued and I am a beautiful person, with a beautiful loving family. How great is that even through my failings as a Mum my children have grown to be responsible, caring loving adults. I am so humbled as a Mother, knowing that things could have gone horribly wrong, It’s clear that there is a higher power looking over us.
Wow! What a beautiful sharing – thank you. It has shown to me the enormous opportunities we have to deepen love when we express truth.
”… I am pretty awesome. Isn’t it great that I can claim that now.” Yes absolutely and isn’t it great that Leonne can express this openly and honestly to her mother. This is awesome and I am deeply inspired.
”These last few years I have felt I can be much more honest, open and loving with you and it has been wonderful.” This is awesome. When we begin to develop a more loving and honest relationship with ourselves all our relationships change in one way or another. I am recognizing this in all of my relationships. At times there are some very beautiful moments and at other times it can be quite challenging but this is the beauty of evolving together.
Miria, your words truly moved me. As a parent myself I totally understand how we can get lost in the roles we take on especially if we are struggling with a lack of foundation for ourselves. However what comes shining through is the deep love and tenderness you naturally are and the total love and appreciation you have for your daughter and sons. As I have continued to work on being tender, non judgemental and loving with myself my foundation has got stronger and stronger and so have found it much easier to delineate between what my issues are, what my children’s issues are and where the responsibility lies for each moment or situation. The waters are less muddy now – there is much more clarity and although I can’t change the past and remove any hurts I have caused I can still help to heal by remaining open, honest, loving and truthful. Thank you so much for responding publicly to Leonne. Your own words will have also brought healing to many.
Thank you Michelle for your response and I totally agree with you, our foundation can change and get stronger as we willingly strive to improve the way we see ourselves and respond to others with a open loving truthful heart. With doing this however does open us up to be vulnerable and like in nature, seen as a weakness and pounced on. This can happen when we are at our weakest point and be really devastating. For me I always found it hard to stick up for myself, whenever I did I came off worse for wear. I always try to open up to how I feel regarding the situation without ranting or yelling. I often find it hard to express myself, and get shot down by aggressive loud people who make so much noise that they don’t hear what your saying, they talk over you, at you, and down at you. I find this intimidating and embarrassing as I am a gentle person and I hate controversy at the best of times. However I think the key here is what you wrote that we can’t change the past but we can remain open, honest, loving and truthful to ourselves AND THAT will shine out to others without even having to use words. This blog has really touched my heart and I feel stronger each time I read these comments of love, beautifully expressed and received.
Dear Leonne and Miria, I feel very moved by the love you both have for each other and how you have shared the healing that has happened which can be seen just within these comments. I feel there are many similarities within my relationship with my mother. There has been so much healing since I am letting go of the judgments I have held about her, myself and the rest of my family and the world for that matter. Letting go of these judgments has been a real blessing because without them, I am able to see more clearly how beautiful my mother is and the qualities she brings to my life and those around her. I am beginning to appreciate this in myself too which is very beautiful. Thank you both for your sharing.
Dear Miria & Leonne,
To Read your responses to each other is truly heart warming, to feel the love you have for each other is in expressible. Thank you both for freely sharing your feelings with such openness. The tenderness and honour you each feel for the other is truly beautiful.
Wow! Miria’s honesty here is amazing and very beautiful. The comment brought many tears; tears of confirmation bringing much understanding. Thank you Miria for openly expressing.
This is beautiful Monica, thank you.
An update. This blog has had such an amazing ripple effect. This is evident in the comments above and in the changes I have seen and felt in my relationships with my family and beyond.
When I wrote this I cried solidly for 4 hours releasing so many childhood hurts and sadness from my body. A sadness many of us hold but don’t pause long enough to allow ourselves to feel.
I originally intended to write this piece and share it anonymously without sharing it with my brothers, This gave me the freedom to say exactly what I felt, however, before the blog was published I found the gorgeous picture above in a very unexpected way and a series of events led me to contact both my brothers, share this with them and publish the blog and photo with their permission.
The brother to who this letter is written felt the love in this letter very deeply. He told me he cried as he read it and felt the truth in the words. He has continued to connect to his innate tenderness and it has been a joy to behold. My younger brother and I continue to evolve our relationship, he read the blog and made no comment, however, I can feel a new openness between us since it was shared.
My mum stumbled across this blog recently on Facebook as result of the recent comments. She reported that she too cried for hours. For her it was a process of letting go and acknowledging her own childhood hurts. I had no idea she held so much guilt for the way we shut down. I feel many parents do this. We discussed my mum’s relationship with her parents and the fact that the whole world does not support us to connect to ourselves and stay tender. She could feel the love and complete lack of blame. She has begun to let go of the guilt she carries and our connection has deepened as a result. So amazing!
I thought this was a love letter for men but have now seen and felt it is a love letter for us all. One that brings a tear to my eye every time I read it. A letter with extraordinary power. A huge thank you to those who commented for inspiring me to revisit this blog and deepening the healing it brings.
Leonne, l love how you have shared the ripple effect of writing this blog. When we express from heart felt tenderness and love the healing this offers is immense. Thank you.
Thank you Leonne. I too have felt the ripple effect of your love letter. I have made a deeper and stronger re-connection to my brother. We were very close as young children but had rather drifted apart as he lives in a different country but we are both enjoying the loving connection of being siblings again.
Beautifully said Leonne, your openness and love helps heal all kinds of emotional wounds. I am so proud of the woman you are, you always have lit up my life and I see you have done so to so many others, what a blessing you are. I love you my sweet daughter.
Dear Leonne – this is a beautiful and deeply touching writing. Your update of the ripple effects is inspiring beyond measure and I am still feeling the effect of this in my own body and there are some deeper hurts to feel and heal for myself.
Yes, this is absolutely a love letter for us all – a letter to read many times over. Thank you for sharing so openly and honestly.
“I thought this was a love letter for men but have now seen and felt it is a love letter for us all. One that brings a tear to my eye every time I read it. A letter with extraordinary power”.
Yes I absolutely agree, this is a love letter for us all and a letter with extraordinary power which I will certainly re-visit.
Dear Leonne, I have read your blog before, but have never before read the update. So, so beautiful. I to recently found myself sharing another blog with the men in my life and like you the sharing has deepened my relationship with them and it has absolutely been one of the best things that I have ever done.
My brother has always appeared to me as very aloof but I know deep down he cares and he knows I love him. You have inspired me Leonie and Mary to express this in a letter to my brother and try to connect at a deeper level. Thank you for the inspiration.
Leonne, thank you for sharing and offering us an opportunity to heal our hurts that we may have from our childhood… your update has brought much healing to me.
When I first read Leonne’s letter to her brother I could feel a lot of resistance and hardness in my body… I simply didn’t want to feel but when I read this deeply touching reply I cried. Now I feel much more open with my brother and with my mother too – more natural and very beautiful.
I am deeply touched by the openness, love and tenderness of your love letter to your brother. Thank you for sharing.
Hi LS, this is very sweet and a wonderful reminder about how we ‘secretly know’.
A really beauty-full letter to read. It reminds me that no matter what happens or what we go through with our relationships it can always come back to True Love and a deeper understanding of ourselves and another.
Thank you LS for sharing your relationship with your brother. I was moved by your words and sensitive understanding. A lot to ponder on. I have always seen my brother as a sensitive man who hides behind a protective barrier. Our relationship has not always been easy. Your article is awesome and one to re-read many times!
This is a very sweet tale of love and tenderness and the tragedy that befalls most men and women as we protect ourselves from getting hurt. It is an oxymoron as it stops us from the very thing we come in naturally wanting and being LOVE. It is gorgeous to feel how you have shifted from the protection to see the beauty that never left you in your relationships with the men in your life.
Beautifully said Vanessa. It is a tragedy and definitely oxymoron. And so very gorgeous to feel the shift from protection to appreciation and be able to say “It has been awesome to feel you relax in my company as I allow myself to accept you exactly as you are”.
Vanessa, I love how you’ve said it is , ‘ the beauty that never left you in your relationships with the men in your life.’ I am left pondering that the beauty, once we forgo our attempts at protecting ourselves, awaits us all in all our relationships. I know I am blessed to know my brother and feel what a gorgeous , tender, loving man he truly is, whether he chooses to express that or not.
Agree Vanessa, the beauty is that Leonne remembers the true gorgeousness and tenderness and connects to this feeling and lives her relationship with her brothers, and from there with all men from this love we all carry inside and not from the hurt that put us into protection. Very inspiring, thank you for this beautiful sharing Leonne.
This is beautiful, thank you. It brings tears to my eyes as I feel the honesty and openness with which you write and the way your words resonate so much with me also… although some of the content is different, the feeling is the same. I have two bothers and a half brother who did not live with us. One brother is a couple of years younger, the other eight years younger. My half brother 10 years older. I was the one who never cried and was sweet and everyone adored as a baby while my younger brother cried a lot of the time and was quite obstreperous at times yet underneath really tender and sweet. The relationships with my brothers have changed a lot too and this piece of writing is inspiring me to continue to establish and deepen the new loving ways that we communicate with each other. Lovely L.S.
This is a beautiful letter LS. I have an older brother and I feel inspired to write on to him. Thank you. This line really flew out for me: “You made things feel easy and I wondered what I was so worried about. I feel like you were sent to be my brother to show me how I could have this too.” Such truth is deeply felt.
Yes, the love here is gorgeous. For me it goes beyond a relationship between two people because it expresses the love that holds us all. A love that brings us the people and the lessons that will help us grow.
What a beautiful blog. Thank you for sharing.
This is just beautiful. Thank you for reminding me how tender I am, and we all are.
This is beautiful, the true tenderness and sensitivity can be felt through your words. How many of us, both men and women shut down in our own ways – some by becoming introverted, some by playing the smiling clown, some by being hard and keeping everybody out, every which way, so we are no longer open to feeling ourselves and others. It is great to rediscover the truth of who we are.
I have read this blog several times and each time I have been moved to cry. We – all of us – are hurt deeply in one form or another by the world which does not represent or honour who we deep down know ourselves to be. And then our ways of coping tend to also hurt ourselves and others – and so the game goes on. I am touched by the tenderness in which you observe and describe this and show that there is a different way. Very beautiful.
Thank you. This is so beautiful. Each time I read a blog on this site I remember how tender we all are and how I choose to forget this when I go out into the world still choosing to fight and try hard. Thank you for reminding us of the sensitivity and tenderness we all hold. This also reminds me that when others act hard and tough they are only really covering hurts too and inside they are just as sensitive and tender as me. Thank you.
Celebrating the tenderness that is always there and understanding why we do not live and express it all the time.
Very true Matilda
Perfectly said, a beautiful and heartfelt piece.
A beautiful tender expression of love. I am inspired to reflect on my relationship with my own brother and sister. Thank you.
I too am inspired to ponder on all the things to appreciate in my relationship with my older brothers and sister, instead of focusing on the negative and putting blame of them for my childhood hurts. Time to let them go and let love be the unifying, and healing factor in my relationships.
This is a truly amazing and inspiring letter, I too have two brothers and can relate much to this. It is amazing to feel how similar my experiences have been and yet how simple and easy it is to appreciate each of them for their true strength. Thank you for sharing this.
What a lovely and tender letter to write. It’s great to see how things can come around full circle and great as a man to read another perspective on what it’s like to fall into those stereotypical roles at such a young age.
How beautiful the letter is written and shared, touched my heart.
What a beautiful letter, celebrating, and in total respect, of men and the pressures they face in life, thank you.
You have made a great point there Rebecca that really stuck out for me “in total respect of men”, as I could feel how often we disrespect and dismiss men for being gentle and tender, and how much that must hurt them.
And this is such a fear for most men, to be ridiculed for being gentle or tender, as it is not the way we have been brought up by society to be. Every message we are given from every angle says being gentle is a weakness and that you are lesser because of this and that a real man is hard and tough. To live as a gentle tender expressive man in the world requires us to act completely against the norms of society. And that takes a true strength I am only now beginning to appreciate.
I love this, words of truth can sometimes be difficult to hear, but all you can feel is your love through their delivery, and as you say, the appreciation and acceptance of your brother for whom he truly is and where he is at.
This is so beauty-full and inspires me to share with my brother and other men in my life my appreciation for their tenderness and strength. Thank you.
Likewise Helen – thank you Leonne. It’s lovely to read how you have been so honest and loving with your brothers. I have a brother who I have lost touch with, and your tender words here really inspire me to start to build that relationship again. It is much appreciated! And also to see and respect men in a totally different way – in their tenderness .
Thank you for sharing. It’s sad that most if not all of us in society experience shutting down as we grow up and how we watch as our siblings do the same maybe with different types of protection, but all to ultimately to shut down from our feelings and cling to a sense of belonging whatever that may be. Your blog reminds us of how it is to feel our own tenderness.
So true Samantha, so many of us shut have down in society as we were growing up and saw our family and friends do the same.
Spot on Samantha and Amita, and so it is great that we now are changing this way of living and returning to being the beautiful, bright, loving, tender and caring beings that we all truly are.
Yes Samantha, Amita & Amina, great that we are changing our choosing to return to being beautiful, bright, loving, tender and caring. And through this we are reflecting to every one else that there is a way different to the shutting down. And it is simple, accessible and normal.
And yet it is so simple to be ourselves and see the love that others are. It is indeed very sad that we hold ourselves back so much. It has something to do with time I’m sure and I feel that the moments we have together are to be appreciated and that we don’t have to wait until later until we think things will be fixed for us. By this I mean, yes we have no control over what someone does but boy oh boy do we enjoy that love that we innately feel in others. That of course is true protection. It’s understandable that someone would want to fit in as their light is so amazing even they can’t handle themselves!
Perfectly described Samantha.
LS what a beautiful letter! Really excellent view of men starting out so sweet and vulnerable and ending up so hard. We all have our stories or trauma and things that have “happened to us” and they are all relative to the individual but the way you have reminded me that it’s understandable for our boys to be hard as a result and that in that acceptance they will feel no need from us and in response will begin to come back to themselves. Brilliant! I will give this a go from today!
I have also learnt that I never had anything to lose in letting go of how I thought others and also myself should be in the family and that has opened up to true wonders at times, although not held everyday it is a moment that presents a marker permanently for the way we can feel how love CAN be truly expressed in our families and beyond, even to people who are not as close or with us 24/7.
Family dynamics can be such an amazing learning process. I agree Rhiannon with what you say about how I thought others and myself should be in the family. It is an ever evolving process of understanding the perfection of it all.
Love it – life is medicine
Interesting Rhiannon…. Letting go of what we expect ourselves and or others in the family to be like…. This could also be useful for me to try. I have recently noticed how caught up I get in trying to make sure everyone is happy (at rare family gatherings) and in the meantime I totally lose myself and have a rubbish time! There’s a clue in there somewhere…!
A great point, Rhiannon… you don’t need to be in frequent contact with someone to have love for them.
Yes Rachael, I agree. I really like Leonne’s blog – so sweet and so respectful at the same time. Clearly written with love.
It is always wonderful to see boys act in a tender, gentle way and very special if we can express that and show that as men. As a man it is truly special to hold that tenderness and reflect it to others, no matter how uncomfortable it might be for them to feel. Thank you for sharing.
In huge appreciation of men and their natural tenderness. Thank you for sharing and reflecting this tenderness, which forever dissolves the gender battle and supports women to expand fully into their natural energy of nurturing.
I agree thank you for sharing and reflecting the tenderness.
A beautiful expression Matilda.
Beautifully expressed, Stephen. Thank you. And Ariana, “This blog and the comments feel like its a great call out that men are far more than the hard guys’ who take life on the chin. A well called for and timely piece Leonie.” is so true.
I agree Stephen – it is very beautiful to observe and feel men honour and express in their tenderness, when they do I just completely melt and any hardness or protection I am in or have been carrying just goes, I can’t help but feel my tenderness too.
I agree Ariana, this blog exposes the tough exterior of any man as a completely false put on, a layer of armor and has nothing to do with his true nature.
Hear hear Stephen. I didn’t grow up with any brothers and don’t recall a lot of examples where I felt this gentleness being expressed, however in recent years I have been blessed to get to know more and more men being, and not shying away, from the tenderness they naturally are. I also see many of these men whose young sons are being raised in celebration (& not denial) of these qualities which is very inspiring and as a woman, invites me to deepen my own gentleness.
Thank you for a beautiful sharing through a True love letter from a woman who’s reflecting on the bond and relationship with her brother. What’s touching for me is that it allowed me to come in contact with the Love I hold for my brother and sister. And I also realise that our family is designed and just perfect the way it is ‘designed’. I can feel that there is magic in it, and that there’s a depth in it that I haven’t considered / felt before. It feels as if I’ve opened up a gateway to something Heavenly spectacular and precious, and it gives a true joy and curiosity to explore this further. Together with others this could and will be so much fun.
Hi Floris, I like the discussion you are raising with your comment. Being more open to how we are in our own families in order to get to know ourselves on a deeper level which naturally would mean we would get to know our families in this way also.
Like you, Floris, I too found this article very touching and opened a connection to not only feel the love I hold for my brother but also his for me. That feels very enveloping like a warm blanket with a depth that we do not share and express openly to each other. From this, though, I feel inspired to express this more openly to him.
Floris what you shared was so touching “our family is designed just perfect the way it is ‘designed'”. This has allowed me to connect and appreciate my family. I have four sisters and we are all very close, I would not change this. I am very fortunate and can really appreciate how loving my family is and how we are there for each other in sickness and health. My parents are the same always their for us.
This is lovely to read Floris, “And I also realise that our family is designed and just perfect the way it is ‘designed’. I can feel that there is magic in it”. I have held a lot of judgement about my family in the past and it feels truly inspiring to read your comment, I will ponder on this.
I shall ponder on this too Rebecca. Families are precious and a great reflection of where we are at within ourselves and can offer great healing for everyone should we choose to accept, appreciate and bring love back, which never truly went anywhere in the first place.
Like you Rebecca, I too have held judgement and criticism about my family growing up, but Floris has made me ponder more deeply on why I was born into the family that I did.
Perhaps is has been divinely designed that way and there is magic to be felt in it.
Thank you, Floris. This is something I am beginning to really appreciate in my family also – “I also realise that our family is designed and just perfect the way it is ‘designed’. I can feel that there is magic in it, and that there’s a depth in it that I haven’t considered / felt before.” It is amazing to feel why my family members are born into this particular family and touch into the purpose of being together.
Yes, when we can tap into the reason behind the design of the family and what we are bringing to each other there is a greater depth and awareness we can get to. If the family feels dysfunctional it allows us to see beyond that to learn about what we need to learn from life. It stops the blame and recriminations and invites taking personal responsibility. But if the family is united and strong then again there is something beautiful as a group you can bring to humanity. As you say Floris, there is magic in that.
It’s true Michelle and a strong family that is truly united is one that this world needs more of.
Yes, united families provide so much support for each other at those challening times in life and united families provide reflection, growth and lots of learning, learning to express fully who we are and that we are all equal in the family unit and we all bring an equal contribution.
Likewise. It is so freeing to see it like this. To see why we have come together and yes to see the magic in this union. Beautiful writing Leonne, thank you.
Floris I experienced that too – that as I read this blog the love I hold for my sister was just bursting out of me. Very touching indeed.
This blog has inspired me to write a letter to my brother and sister. There is so much to express that it there to be appreciated in every possible way.
Beautiful sharing Floris, how wonderful for you and your family.
Thank you Leonne. It is really gorgeous what you have shared here. Yes I agree Floris, it does show, there are no mistakes that we come with the family we are born into. Like Leonne we have the opportunity to heal if we choose rather than blame our family for our hurts.
Well said. Wow.
Your comment also has me reflecting on my relationship with my brother and sister and even though we don’t have regular contact the connection is always there and is solid. Something to appreciate. I’m visiting each of them in the next couple of weeks and feel this article and the comments are very timely for me to be reading just now.