A Testimony – A Letter to My Mentor – Dr. Robbie Gholson Smith

Mother love is the fuel that enables a normal human being to do the impossible. Mother is the bank where we deposit all our hurts and worries. -author Unknown *Painting Mothers Love by Kolongi
Mother love is the fuel that enables a normal human being to do the impossible. Mother is the bank where we deposit all our hurts and worries. -Author Unknown             *Painting “Mothers Love” by Kolongi

This letter was personally written to Dr. Robbie Gholson Smith, my wisest and most loving mentor. I call her Mom, because that is the nature of our relationship. It was an outpouring of my soul and I wanted to share it with you here. I wrote this to her as I moved through some very troubling times into a new realization of self and the yearning to re-established lost relationships that are very important to me.   So I typed my handwritten draft for you just before I sent it in the mail to her knowing she would not mind me sharing it with you.


I know it has been a long time, to long of a time since we spoke last.  I am sorry for putting so much space between us.  I have been processing through some things for awhile and it has taken sometime for me to get to a place of release.

The process of pain I’ve allowed myself to suffer through has taken so much away from me over the last 2 years.  It has also given me a deeper level of awareness of self and a real vigor for wanting to savor each and every moment of life.

I’ve suffered through almost 50 years (49 now) of my life. I contemplate now what a life of peace and joy and abundance would be like daily knowing I was Divinely crafted to live a life just as so.

The last two years I’ve been so afraid with pride that I really didn’t want anyone to know I had not been able to maintain the awareness of truth of who I am and that I allowed myself to sink into an even deeper pool of lack and limitation loosing everything I had built my life up to.

The last couple of months have shocked me into reality of where I am in my life; almost 50 years old still going through mental anguish.  Enough – The END!

My best friend of 36 years died in March from cancer, 2 years my junior.  Then Michael Jackson died 2 weeks ago (at the time of this writing), 2 years my senior.  I see death as something to embrace.  I know that it  lives between each breath and I have a choice to make in every moment.  I choose life, not death even through my own pain and suffering.  There is so much more I desire to do with my life and I can’t do it from a grave.

The first thing I resolve to do is re-establish and rebuild relationships that are important to me.  Then I can and will build out from that sphere of love and influence.

I have so much to say, to tell you, where do I begin?

I guess the first place is with a sincere apology.  I”m so so sorry that I just dropped off the radar.  I allowed an experience I had with my mother to dictate my better judgment and ended up loosing more than I was willing to pay for.

I know you have treated with me for a better relationship with my maternal mother.  But I had more growth to go through on this issue first.  Looking back I can’t believe it took all this time for me to get it though.

After OC died (OC Smith), my relationship with you became a permanent bond, one I was seeking for so long, one so close to me I use to wish so desperately you were my maternal mom just so I could escape the pain of dealing with the one I chose to be born into this experience through.

Several others filled the gaps for me Mom Shirley (deceased), Mom Lilly, Rev. Henrietta Smith and even Benita (deceased) and Ian. I had no idea how wounded I allowed myself to become.

I had no concept of how wounded I was.  I allowed my obsession to have a relationship with my mother rule my every move, both positive and negative.

Living my life for the approval of one person that never believed in anything other than tough love.  Wow!  How much tougher can it get.  🙂

Anyway, we had a brief reunion several years ago until I got a new man in my life.  Looking back we always seem to get along when I was single.  She never really ever approved of any of the guys I dated.  Funny thought is, it took us a long time to get use to who she chose to be with after my Dad died, but the family accepted her choice and moved on.

Well, during that time I put everything and everyone on the shelf to spend time with my mother. Short lived cycle though, as it came back to another tragic end.  There’s to much drama and pain to write about here and its not the point of this letter.  You can read the book I’m writing to help others with toxic parents learn to detach and move forward with their lives later. 🙂

It’s so consuming to be controlled and manipulated by a parent til it goes on auto-pilot in your head.  Sadly, my mother and I are not speaking now, it will be two years this coming November.  Funny thing, this time I feel really free in the situation and I’m OK with just letting it be what it is or is not.

I was in the emergency room, brought there by ambulance last year while living in a little weekly hotel in West Hollywood.  You know, at the end of the road and the end of your money and surviving on hope.  My mother never called to see how I was or ever called my guy back to give him any medical information while I was there or weeks later.  No call still even today, Wow!  There’s a message for you.  Talk about tough love!  Now that’s tough!

That’s when I finally realized my energy was being invested in the wrong direction.  All the love I sought from her, I have already in ME!  What a revelation!  What am I suffering through?

I now understood love is a constant in the Universe, and I know its all about me loving me, not seeing love on the outside first, which is what I had been doing my whole life.

No regrets about my mother though, and no hatred either.  It was the lesson I was born to discover.  Guess its why I chose her as the maternal parent,  just to get that tough love thing.   You see, we’ve never been close, not ever really.  Kinda a Cinderella type story.  I don’t think she really was ready to have kids when she had me, she was still going through her own self-discovery process.

I remember my Dad doing all the homework with us and spending all the quality time too.  Except sewing and cooking.  She taught me that well.  I’m a great cook.

Later, I found out that my mother couldn’t read as a child and was really focused on her own education at that time.  She was in college when we were little kids.

Well, the eldest child is generally the break-in kid.  No instruction manual comes with a baby you know. 🙂

Ian (my son) was so blessed because he had you and so many other extensions for moms in our spiritual environment since most knew I was in a childlike mindset trying to raise him.  What a blessing for both of us.  Ian is simply an amazing person.  He’ll be 24 tomorrow. (August 22, 2009)

Well I’ve allowed this process to put so much space and time between us, you and I.  I was so lost, and in pain too.  All self-inflicted, but scared to share because I’m a minister and suppose to know how to pull my life together.  So I kept it a secret.  But what secrets are there in the Universe?  Only the ones we hide in ourselves.  Everyone else can see them, we just tell ourselves they can’t or that they don’t really know etc…

What I learned is that it all begins with the nurturing of self first.  We have to mother our own emotions and pains.  Some things in life just are the way they are for your own growth and no amount of wishing for a change will make them any different.  Just accept it as it is and move forward.  Its the time that it takes to accept something that is so painful.

I know you are thinking this is crazy, but I had to allow time to process it all.  See the metaphysical education is academic at first.  I had to find it in my soul as the truth of my being for it to live within me.   I had to find that no amount of wishing for an outcome is certain when you don’t believe it in your soul.  Also, no amount of wishing for someone else to change can happen without that person wanting the same result you do.

I’ve lived my whole life seeking approval and love from others never realizing I only ever had to love me.  For that I can be grateful for my journey no matter how many traumatic moments I’ve experienced.

It’s been such a long journey of pain I’ve created for my life.  I laugh now because at 49 I see myself as one of the Israelites that was lost in the desert for 40 years.  LOL  Funny to look at but sadly true, and amazingly I have been sustained the whole time.

Forty years you sustained them in the wilderness so that they lacked nothing; their clothes did not wear out and their feet did not swell.

~Nehemiah 9: 21

Its been an arduous journey of  long-suffering.  But I learned that through long-suffering you get to a place of great reward in the growth of your experience.  Sacrifice does not mean giving up who you are or what you dream and believe in.

Knowing that love is a constant in the Universe and knows no face. Knowing that I was born the greatest POWER as the manifest I AM. Knowing that I have always had the POWER TO BE, and that POWER includes the choices to BE in Pain and Suffering or Lack and Limitation.  It’s all in knowing it is all MY choice that either sets me free or imprisons me.

By some strange warped concept in my mind I moved myself to a place of lack and limitation believing it would have the benefit of allowing me to receive the attention I desired. So wrong! So very very Wrong!  It just meant I was flat broke and feeling sorry for myself.  LOL

Hey, the attention you get at the bottom is being given the humble opportunity to feed on garbage and a pat on the back that says keep up the good work, you’ll be OK!  What good work?  The good work of being a victim, living with a victim mentality; victimized by your own thought processes.

I was moved to send you this letter.  It has taken me several months to write it. I started over several times.  A phone call could not express it this way.  I had to put it on paper. Now I have moved from one place in mind to an understanding that I always had the POWER to claim my Divine Birthright, including my relationship with YOU!  Which I must share has always been the single most POWERFUL and uplifting experience because you were always the Mom I desired to have, but most of all the One I needed.  You are real (always are), you loved me when I needed it and disciplined me when I whined and cried, even as a grown woman.  Most of all you were always there to listen and help me sort out the messes I got myself into.  Thanks Mom!

When I look over my life at the people that influenced me the most you stand in the highest rank.  I don’t say this to flatter, but as the truth from my experience.

It has been a long long road, one filled with tremendous disappointment and deep routed pain and sorrow.  But it has also been a life journey that has made me one of the most POWERFUL People of my generation.

I have the Power to break open so many channels for others and I have been blessed with a very special gift of empowerment that reaches into the core of one’s soul and connects with their Spirit, sharing the truth they seek to push through their fears, struggles, pain and strife to accomplish the DREAMS they have for their own lives.  My gift of Empowerment causes an immediate conscious shift for those I have the honor and opportunity to touch through words written or spoken, and my gift of true passionate love is felt immediately in my smile and my touch and I am so willing and open to share all I know, believe and live with others.

I have created what I call the Empowering Word of Truth to share words of inspiration and encouragement with others.  My journey is not paved for me to whine about any longer, cry foul, why me or point blame.  It is a journey designed to fulfill a passion to encourage others to move on their own dreams to live and truly LIVE WELL and FREE.

Everything I experience is by my own choice in one way or another no matter how painful it was or is, and no matter how many people may have had a part in my play.

What my mother gave me she always referred to as tough love.  What I’ve learned through this process is how to love tough.  Loving tough is a true practice in long-suffering.

Loving tough means being able to endure through bad times and still be open to love by first loving self, not searching for love from others to fill a void.  There was never a void, just the wrong focus.

Love has no face, it is a constant in the Universe.

A mom is not who bore you, it is who nurtures your soul.

I am blessed more than I ever realized because I have managed to created for myself more than one mothering experience.  Each has contributed to the dynamic person I NOW am.

I have been living in a tremendously impoverished state of mind resulting in the loss of my home, my car, my job, my income and most of my friends and family.  Living in cars and dingy hotels, or one room in someone’s home that I don’t know just to survive, afraid to share the truth of my experience for fear of continued loss in that which I work to build.  But it doesn’t matter much now at all.  People will believe whatever they want anyway and I’m not one for playing a game where I have to wear a mask. I have to live the life of who I am right now and if that is not good enough for someone it has nothing to do with my journey or my experience.  My experience is about living truthfully as the person I truly am, right now and tomorrow.

It has been a blessing however moving through the bottom dwellers experience.  I didn’t realize my own thoughts could bring me to this.

I watched as the man I love struggled with his own identity in the wake of his pending aging process, scarred by his own childhood traumas including child molestation and abandonment and abuse making him a real tough love.  More of the object life lesson for me on Loving Tough.  Amazing how we attract such mirrors into our experience.  His issues with his own mother run deep; although they have a very very different relationship and speak to each other often.  So many similarities although horribly different.  Still childhood traumas are carried forth into adulthood, which affects all our adult decisions until we deal with them squarely and surely.

With peers going to sleep now from my best friend of 37 years at 47 years old, Michael Jackson at 50 in June and most recently my 1st cousin Joby also 47, just last week, I realize more and more that I’ve literally spent the last 49 years of my life if pain.

I literally have not lived yet.  I am not ready to die now.  No, NOT NOW!  I haven’t lived yet.  I have no more time to get ready to live or to do it tomorrow.  So I start now with re-establishing that which is most important to me, the relationships with the people I truly trust and love.  YOU!

It is time now to move from being a victim to being a VICTOR.  It is time to take action on my Dreams without fear from right where I am.  What else could I possibly loose at this point?  Things don’t matter, and other people going to sleep only are reminders of my own mortality at this point, even through the grief of loss, it is still only a reminder that one day I will take this trip too.

I’ve lost so much, I can only build up from this point.

Ahhh, but to rejoice in the rebuilding process.

And I will restore to you the years that the locust hath eaten, the canker-worm, and the caterpillar…

~Joel 2:25

I am ready for my full healing, to love and to grown and to go. To move with POWER and PASSION on MY DREAMS knowing that all that I have need of is already within me and there to take me to Victory as I move.  I am ready to move to accomplish my work, my true purpose for being here no longer wasting time and effort on someone else’s dreams when my own sit and wait for me to tend to them.

Not that I don’t support other people’s dreams, but I have learned the hard way that if it is not my dream, I cannot make it happen for someone else.  My greatest success and greatest rewards come from moving within my own purpose, which amazingly happens to align itself to help others manifest their own dreams.  I’ve been doing this all backwards.  Investing my life and energy in someone’s dreams while mine sit idle does not help to move either one of us forward.  When I am moving on my own passions, everything and everyone in my circle of influence become engulfed in the vacuum and we all move to Victory together.

I am ready to move swiftly with the POWER of Spirit beneath me to carry me.  I don’t know really how to start or where to start or even if I have the right tools to start.  All I know is its time to start and that fear has kept me stagnant to long from starting my life and I cannot wait any longer because later never comes.

I know all the resources are within me to do what is needed.  I know that I can and will and this letter to you is my first step in digging my way out and back to the top.  No pretending or fear of where I’ve been.  It’s all ok.  I know that now.

I’m ready to live, Spirit taught me death on earth.  No matter how low I got, I never was physically dead even when I wished I was.  Now I take all that back and I wish to LIVE.  To live filled with FIRE, PASSION and LIFE.  Full of Love and Joy and Laughter.  Its my time to express all those things in my life, I still have time.  At least I am believing it to be so.  I can’t choose to go to sleep now, there is to much to do.  It is time to rise like the Phoenix from the ashes of death, knowing that the fire has rekindled my Spirit and birthed me anew.

I have a lot to do, all I want/desire to do, and it all starts with this letter, with me hugging you, crying and laughing with you.  With me saying Thank You too.

I love you Mom!



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