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  • Leslie Merrell

More Than Just a Dream


It was a dimly lit room. ... I was scared. ... No, I was terrified. ... And, I was hurting. ... I knew there was a monster behind the door, and I knew that opening the door was necessary to heal the pain. I could choose to stay in this space, with pain and fear pressing upon me. Or, I could choose to courageously open that door, and face the monster.

I chose to move toward the door. Heart pounding, body shaking, I reached for the door knob. When, suddenly, I was filled with a calm ... knowing. The fear had dispersed. I knew what, or rather who, I would find behind that door. I turned the knob and pulled the door.

Sitting on the floor in the corner of the dark closet, with arms hugging her knees, was a beautiful, terrified little girl. My heart was filled with love and compassion for her. I tried to talk to her, but she wouldn't answer. She just looked at me with those eyes that clearly showed her fear.


I spoke kindly to her, and after a while, I coaxed her out from the closet. When I offered my hand to hold, she just hugged herself, but followed me closely. I asked her to lead the way, but she looked up at me with a sort of blank confusion. So, together, we began to explore the beautiful, bright place we were in.


When I woke, my mind worked to process what had just happened. I had been so terrified, and absolutely convinced, that I would find a hideous, cruel monster when I opened that door. Instead, it had been ... me. ... Me, as a little girl. Terrified, and making herself as small and scarce as she knew how. I was meeting the core of myself, face to face for the first time. And, my heart had burst with love for her.

I wondered why I had been so sure that I would find a monster. Why every instinct inside of me had wanted to run and hide. It was an illusion. An illusion I had created, with my beliefs. I believed I was hideous. I believed I was cruel. I believed I was unloveable. Beliefs that were planted and watered with the false narratives of this fallen world.

Yet, the calm knowing that had washed over me, also washed away the illusion. Leaving only the truth. I am beautiful. I am kind. I am loving. I am worthy of taking up space. I don't have to be afraid. I can find and use my voice for good. There is room in this big beautiful world for me, just as I am.


And, my friends, I promise, the same is true for you. You are beautiful. You are kind. You are loving. You are worthy of taking up space. You don't have to be afraid. You have a unique voice that can contribute what only you can contribute. There is room in this big beautiful world for you, just as you are. Believe me when I say, I would willingly open that door to find you. I would love you, and I would invite you to come out and begin to be present in the truth and in this world. And, if you'll let me, I'll hold your hand as you begin to explore this beautiful, bright place we are in.




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