My son was painting his Lego mini figs today and came to me to proudly show me his work. He explained why some of the paint looked scratched and wore off...this particular soldier had battle damage beginning to wear on his armour. I can relate. These past couple of weeks have proven to be some of the most difficult of my life. I fear I am also showing some wear and battle damage. I am tired...completely spent even. Body, mind and soul are drained. I am physically, mentally and emotionally raw. I feel completely turned inside out. My whole being is so drained I can't even fake it. My battle damage is exposed for all to see. This is me. For now. I will wear my scars for some time, for all to see. But if you can look past my wounds, and look deep inside, my eyes will explain what words never could. I am still here. Remember me? I have felt lost. I have been lost. But I am walking my path (I happen to be crawling through some rough terrain at the moment). My eyes will show you that my heart aches, but she still searches for sun. They will remind you that for every ending an opportunity for a new beginning exists. When you look at my eyes you will see what tired hope looks like. Look closer please. See me. Battle scarred and scared. Staring right back at you. I am not always strong. There is no need to be. Sometimes I am tired and weak. That is why I have asked so many of you for your love and prayers. I have needed an army of love. It works you know. When you feel you are drowning, arm yourself with love. Wear your battle damage for the world to see. Let them see you. For it is in your rising where you will inspire. Your freedom lives within you. It is yours for the taking. Dig deep until you get to the other side. Reach for hands if you must, but don't you quit. Dust yourself off. Find the light that illuminates your path. You are meant to shine. My son set his battle worn soldier up on his special shelf. He is aware that although this soldier appears to be worn and broken, this was an experienced fighter. A soldier that has been to war and back. Someone who had a rough patch...a soldier that would continue his journey. Someone special.