So today I was talking to my new coworker Meghan about the highs and lows of life. In this discussion it came up that in life, there are instances that force you into contact with parts of yourself that you would rather not be seen with. I’m talking about those moments where something fairly inane may happen and all of a sudden you’re back in the 5th grade, at the exact moment you were ridiculed in front of your entire class for saying the wrong answer and felt dumb because you didn’t know the right one (that one is me), or to high school where you were embarrassed by a bully in front of the whole class for something that had happened two years prior (that was me too).
These moments seem to come up out of nowhere (or could just be a symptom of my detox) and as swiftly as they kick you in the pants, they’ve gone back to that dark spot at the back of your mind (you know the one), ready and waiting to make you feel like crap. An interesting phenomena, and one I add with chagrin, which seems to be coming up with more regularity than a sperm whale comes up to breath once an hour. As crappy as this may be, its a good sign for two reasons.
For one, its a good thing because it means that I’m actually making real progress.
How do I figure?
Well if you ask me, than I believe that to be successful or no correction, be happy (which lets face it are the same things), than you at some point have to release all of the pent up, built up and piggy backing, useless crap you’ve been carrying around forever.
Because this stuff no longer serves you. It served it’s purpose a long time ago and finally (finally!) you don’t need it anymore. Ie. the defence mechanism loses its purpose because there’s nothing to defend against anymore. I’m no longer in grade 5 or high school, meaning I’m no longer the person I was then. The same rules don’t apply. In fact, I make my own rules now, and I’m way more forgiving of and happier with myself now than I ever was before. So it’s time to let go.
Which brings me to the other reason why the dredging up of old memories and feelings is a good thing. By reliving these memories, I’m shown things from my past which I struggled with. Just as much as those responses don’t serve me now, they also still do because I have one last lesson to learn from them. Or at least it should be one, but depending on how stubborn I am on any given day, it could be many last lessons… (WARNING: Do not ignore yourself, you will only come back, and each time with more vengeance, because you don’t like to be ignored.)
What I mean is that I don’t have to feel dumb anymore, because I now have all of the tools necessary to overcome those feelings, all of the support I could need to get past them and let’s not forget that as an adult, I also have all the freedom in the world to explore each experience, thus creating a fuller, more meaningful experience of life. Which means now it’s time to really work towards better responses and new feelings and memories that are in line with who I am now.
As my friend Meghan kind of spelled out for me, you need to love those parts of yourself that were once shamed, embarrassed, or felt stupid, because obviously they could do with the love the most. They need as much love, light and attention as you can spare so that they can be released and you can move forward as your brightest, happiest, and loveliest self.
So here’s to taking the first great steps towards loving myself more fully. To being more aware of the painful parts of my past that I needed - without them I wouldn’t be who I am today. And to those same painful memories - sayonara baby! - I won’t be needing you where I’m going. Thanks for playing, but now I will be moving along to the next phase in my own personal evolutionary game of life.