Thursday, August 19, 2010


I walk in the conference room, and there you sit, a picture of elegance.

Your hair is impeccably styled.  You carry yourself with an air of self confidence.  Your clothing confirms what the client intake sheet shows.  You are a professional.  As you answer my questions, you do so with incredible poise, as if telling someone else's story.  You tell me of your success.  You tell me how you are singlehandedly supporting you, your husband, and your children.  You tell me of how you have wrestled down debt, survived your husband's incarceration, his unemployment, and his refusal to find a job.  You tell me this with a sense of accomplishment and pride.

You have developed an impressive image, an almost impenetrable armor.

But I can see cracks.

Although you seem very composed, your eyes betray the fact that you have been crying.

Abuse.  Alcoholism.  Threats.

Someone who has so strongly survived the storms of life now needs a hand to guide her.  And I sense the shame.

Shame because of what has happened.

Shame that you can no longer fight this alone.

Shame that someone of your status and accomplishment is unable to hold out any longer.

Slowly, the armor begins to crumble.  And you weep.

Come, let's talk.  We have a lot of work to do.


Brigid said...

Having been there, I can only say, that post brought me to tears.

Thank you for doing what you do.

Lawyer said...

Thank you for taking the time to read and for your kind words.

We all have a past, we are all carrying the scars of something. Every leader walks with a limp. We may not look the best, but we are still standing. Maybe we can't completely stand on our own. Maybe we rely on the strength and words of friends and family, but we are still here.

Perhaps bruised, bloodied, and with a hockey player's smile, but still standing.

You are talented and your writing is inspirational. You ought to be proud of who you are.