Monday, June 25, 2012

Truth and Acceptance

There is no light so bright as that of truth but what is truth? I suppose there are some truths accepted by the majority. We all nod. "Yes. That is true." There are some truths which quite possibly only hold verity to me, while the remainder of the populace revolts, "No! That's not true!"

If I say, "I am fat", that is my truth while those around me chime, "No you're not!" I may want to believe them but as I sit with my belly popping over the waistline of my jeans, I think to myself, "Um, yeah, I'm kind of heavier than I'd like to be."

So what is our truth and what does it do for us? Does it light a path to action? ...and, as always, we may choose a path of love or a path of fear. If I say, "I am fat" as my truth and choose a path of loving action, I may decide against the waffles, butter and maple syrup for breakfast and choose to take a walk and have a salad or freshly squeezed vegetable juice for lunch. On the other hand, today I may choose the path of fear, ignore the discomfort of the extra weight, eat the waffles and have a grilled cheese sandwich for lunch. As long as I am aware of the choices I make, I can applaud or forgive myself, both loving reactions, and move forward, able to reinvent myself daily, in every moment, with loving kindness, with acceptance in every beautiful moment.

-Gillian Cornwall, c June 20, 2012

Sunday, June 17, 2012


What do you believe about yourself and why do you believe this?

I have asked my students this. I ask them to write down what they believe about themselves. I ask them to fold the paper in half and write why they believe this. I ask them to fold it again and put it away, to just let it be where it is. It's on a piece of paper. Does this make it true? I explain how I believe I have the opportunity to reinvent myself daily, that I am not a culmination of others beliefs about me and that this is the only way I stand before them now, teaching.

I am worthy. I have value. Everyone wants to be seen. Everyone wants to be heard. Everyone wants to know that what they said means something to someone. I confess that I learned this from Oprah.

I write because I love it. I want to open my chest to you like my ribs are window shutters and shine out to you and have you shine back at me. We are reflections of each other. We are one.

-Gillian Cornwall, c 11June2012

Sunday, June 10, 2012

A Memory, In Gratitude - a 'coming out' story

One of these things is not like the others...

A Memory, In Gratitude
-for JM

I sat close beside you on your bed, in your room, terrified, filled with the need to tell you my truth that you might better understand me and, at times, my shyness with you. Every time I started to speak, the words petrified in my throat. I choked on the fear of your response. What if you asked me to leave? What if you were repulsed by me, by this thing that I was and had no control over, this thing that I could not nor did not want to change?

You leaned into me, pulling me close by the shoulder, and looking into my eyes, you spoke softly but firmly, "I'm really worried. Please tell me, what's wrong?"

I later found out that you thought I would tell you I'd been diagnosed with a fatal disease and that I'd be dying off without further ado. While I felt in that moment as though that was precisely what I would do, that was not, in fact, the case.

I don't know why I believed you would react adversely to the information I was compelled to share. After all, you were a perfectly kind and decent human being; nonetheless, I had been raised to believe that I was wrong, off, defective - both within my family and by the world at large. Now I know the truth. I am perfect in each moment of my life as long as I live a path of kindness, joy and love. I am full. I am complete.

Knowing you, having you hold up a lantern when I was still so young and tell me you could see me, you heard me and that I meant something to you - this was formative in my path to wellness, truth and self-acceptance.

Your friendship and acceptance of me at the tender age of 19, as I told you, "I'm gay" meant the world to me. I felt loved in that moment and I am eternally grateful for that. Thank you.

- Gillian Cornwall, June 7, 2012