WHO I AM
AMBER SOPHIA WAS BORN ONCE UPON A TIME....
Bright, shining, and whole she came into this world, just like you. But sadly, Amber Sophia was born into a family of marionettes. Her wooden parents were once human but had become hardened by the pain and uncertainty the world holds and were eventually strung up, losing any memory of self-control or their own will. Amber Sophia was shaped by her parents, taught to conceal any feelings. Soon, Amber Sophia lost her Sophia, the wisdom and sense of her own self. She buried her pain, suffering, and sadness behind the veil of a painted smile. Years of this concealment turned the once human girl of flesh and light into wood. She became only Amber, apart from her Sophia.
It became harder and harder for her to move as the weight of her pain and separation from Sophia became too much to bear. Eventually her wooden parents presented the child with her own set of strings and placed a brush in her hand to paint on her face a single chosen emotion. Empowered by the brush, Amber began to teach herself how to paint away the overwhelming emotions, rising into works of art, forever trapping the pain in canvas. This became Amber's only way to express anything true about herself, the one gift that she cherished. Without it she was nothing more than a puppet on a string, expressionless, feeling-less, and lost.
As years passed, loss and pain chipped away at the wooden girl until one day she realized she had become bound by the strings that once gave her movement, a physical sign of all of the lies she had spun to conceal her true nature. Trapped and alone she waited, increasingly unable to feel or function. She began to sink, down into nothing. As she was sinking she heard the voice of another calling to her. The other was strung up just like Amber. But, in her hand she held a beautiful rose. Knowing not what to do with it, she gifted it to Amber. With the thorns of the rose Amber was able to free herself from the tangled strings that held her immobile. At that moment the rose began to glow. Before her loomed a dark forest, and opening before her into the forest was a new and unknown pathway. The rose's light shined into it, pointing her in this new direction.
As she ventured along the pathway into the dark forest, the girl came upon a younger, human version of herself who still shone as wooden exterior had not yet consumed her. The young child pleaded with Amber to look at her pain so she could remember what it was like to feel alive and be real. “You must give me a name,” the child said. And so Amber looked into the child's eyes and said, “I know you. I will name you The Fair Child.” With that she freed the sad child from abandonment, who appeared alongside her now as a free person. And, they continued down the path together.
The two companions soon came upon a door deep in the woods with the stone face of a sleeping woman. “You must wake her by cutting the last string,” The Fair Child explained. Gripped with fear, Amber pleaded, “What if I fall without my string, never to get up again?” “You only need to let go,” The Fair Child replied, pointing to Amber's hand. Realizing the only remaining string was no longer embedded into her wooden exterior, but instead gripped in her hand, Amber took a deep breath and let go. As Amber fell to her knees a brightness like the sun exploded in front of the two. At that moment, the sleeping woman made of stone came alive, vivid and golden flowing and beautiful.
The woman smiled at them and spoke:
“I am what you cannot see
You see me staring back at you in the gaze of others
…but not in the mirrored reflection
You scratch and claw to understand it
What do they see you ask
If you could you would cut me out
Throw me away
You have tried
But you cannot
I will always shine through
Until the day
You recognize I am you.”
For what felt like an eternity they remained still as stone, not sure of what to do. Then the statue smiled and spoke once more:
”Now stand and move through me. Inside you will find the lost pieces.”
With apprehension Amber started to stand, and to her surprise was able to get on her feet again, without the strings she had so long depended on.
As the two girls moved through the magnificent woman they found themselves standing at the beginning of a long dark hall full of large floor-length antique mirrors. As she stood in front of each mirror and gazed into the reflection, Amber beheld the image and form of each pain she had painted along the way reaching out to her. The Fair Child explained that in order to be human again and shine as she was meant to Amber would have to look deeply into the pain and discern the hidden beauty they each held. One by one Amber leaned in, finding the value of each pain she had locked away, and each was transformed into a beautiful twinkling stone appearing in her hand. With each new precious gem added to her collection Amber felt a little lighter. A backwards glance revealed chunks of her hardened and rigid wooden exterior that had fallen away and trailed behind her on the velvet carpet.
Walking away with the last gem in hand there appeared at the end of the broad hall a great golden throne on which a majestic woman was seated. On her head sat an amazing crown and in the center of her neck what looked like an ornate key hole. Through the key hole shone a brilliant blue glow from within the woman's throat. As the two approached the curious woman Amber's hand began to vibrate. As she looked down she was surprised to see the gems had now formed a key. Without hesitation Amber raised the key to the neck of the mighty woman, who gazed upon her patiently as she inserted the key and turned it. Instantly the radiating blue light burst through the top of the woman's head like violent flames and she began to speak:
“I am your voice
Can you feel me?
I stream in through your crown and submerge your heart
I burst forth from within
…when you unlock me
I transform your smug withhold into divine
I fuel your gift of empathy
I am your unconscious creativity.”
A sudden rush came over Amber. She felt so very wonderful and strange as a new and familiar power grew inside her. Her Sophia had returned, restored through embracing the beauty in her pain.
”Your wooden shell is gone, you are now restored, Amber Sophia. What you do with this is up to you. Use your restored wisdom in who you are well. We will see what you do.”
With light hearts, Amber Sophia and The Fair Child found themselves back on their new pathway together. As they journeyed further and encountered others the strings attached to each of those around them were now visible. Some only had a few, and others were tightly bound.
Restored and whole and with The Fair Child by her side Amber Sophia set out to share her story with the world. She often took on the form of a simple rose, guiding others on their own journey to a new pathway. And her human heart was increasingly full. And she never again allowed the strings to bind her, or her body to be again overtaken by the hardened wood. For she saw the beauty in her pain and sought to spread that beauty to the world, through the light of the rose.