Bold Voices is a series where people with “differences” share their personal story or experiences to validate and inspire others.
We are so pleased to present Tyler Oxford’s story about his journey to personal transformation and healing. Thank you, Tyler, for sharing your uplifting story with us and encouraging others toward with your incredible story!
Up until I was 35-years-old, I was bullied and severely verbally abused my Dad. Three days before Christmas of 2008, I ended the relationship with my father for the fourth time, which I thought was to be the final time. What I knew more than anything in my life at that point was that if I was to heal my anger issues, my judgment, my cynicism, my penchant for escapism through drama and alcohol and drugs and food addictions, it would not happen with Allen in my life. My visit to New Orleans in late March of 2013 was the final leg of a four and a half year journey through healing, transformation, and forgiveness.
Three weeks before I flew to New Orleans, my step-mother RubyAnn called to tell me something. After more small talk than usual, she nervously said to me, “You know, your Daddy, he hasn’t really changed.” A deep smile overtook me as I simply responded, “I know—but I have.”
When Dad picked me up from the airport, his nervousness was palpable. He apologized for not having a cup for the beer he brought me, because he didn’t want me drinking it out of a bottle in case a cop spotted me sipping on it. I thanked him and told him that after flying all day it would probably knock me out anyway—he promptly opened the beer and drank it out of the bottle.
It only took until the second night for me to slip up and be drawn into a conversation where I found myself feeling the full force and intensity of my Dad’s attack and anger. The topic doesn’t matter—it never did. All I know was that in the midst of that maelstrom, hearing the words which had once been so painful, the experience was very different.
There was no fear in me. I did not feel any anger. Nothing was taken personally. I had no attachment to outcome. All I felt in that moment was the most intense feeling of love welling up from the deepest place inside me, meeting my Father’s words and emotion and anger exactly as they were, with the exact same intensity; except this time there was no place within me where his fight or anger could connect—there was only love and compassion.
In a sort of disconnected, disembodied way I seemed to watch myself being fully engaged with Allen, yet at the same time having absolutely no attachment. Regardless of the words he said, with the anger they carried, the unconditional love flowing from me to him seemed to neutralize and disarm with effortless efficiency—I even recall smiling.
All I really remember of the exchange was that it lasted for only three or four intense minutes in which my Dad seemed mostly to be befuddled and confused in his anger. Finally he gave up, claimed to be very tired, and went to bed saying that he was glad I had come to visit, and that he loved me—I was glad too, and knew that I loved him deeply.
Tyler Oxford (left), with his parents
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Tyler Oxford is a visionary change maker whose life’s mission is to reach people who are waking up, supporting them in the realization of their dreams and life intentions. As a licensed Spiritual Practitioner, professional Success and Empowerment Coach, along with being a Motivational Speaker, Tyler is striving to reach people who have not yet been reached, connecting with people around the globe in an effort to create a supportive community where people feel safe. Contact Tyler at firstname.lastname@example.org or find him fulfilling his passion of documenting people’s journeys through photography and video at www.infinityplus1productions.com !
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