It amazes me how thoughts come unbidden into my consciousness. I can be doing anything – driving, writing, watching TV, working on my computer – and something which was probably lurking just at the edge of my consciousness moves into my mind. And then waves move through me as old beliefs about myself and who I am seem to rise before me fully grown like Athena from Zeus’ forehead.
And even though my rational, conscious mind knows that what I start to think about is not who I AM but who others told me I was to the point that I began to believe their truth was mine, my body and my spirit are stuck for a bit of time in old mire.
That happened to me recently. I was sitting at my computer and began playing a conversation I would really like to have with someone who, in living with their hurt, was not able to hear what I was saying [or in this case, writing] to them. And I found myself wanting to tell them that they have a right to their pain and annoyance and that that does not make them right and make me wrong. And up came so many times from my past when I did what I felt was the right thing and expressed myself and said my piece and not in a mean way and I was misunderstood. And I wanted to apologize for taking my position even as I wanted to yell.
And that led to something I didn’t even know was there – that I’ve chosen to take part in things and join groups and apply for jobs, not because having those experiences in my life would be the most wonderful thing but because I wanted not only to be accepted but to be seen as being good at something. Good from someone else’s point of view. And then I knew that it was not that I wanted to just be good at something. I wanted to be the best at something – better than anyone else.
There have been so many times in my life when I’ve thought that once I’ve spoken about something and moved through it in some form, then it was and would be gone from my conscious and my unconscious mind forever. And then it would come back in another form or be brought to my awareness by a different trigger. And I would work though it and metabolize it and think that everything was and would be all better only to have that belief come back.
It’s like dealing with a cold. Get one and get through it and then think that you’re done with colds for the year. And the truth is that, while you’re immune to the germ that caused one cold, you’re not immune to the other germs out there. And so you get another cold and so on and so on.
Gets really exhausting doing that dealing with old externally driven stuff. And eventually, for me, it can become disheartening – “Oh no! Not you again!” and then I begin to expect that it’s going to come back again and again. [Think ‘The Cat Came Back’.] And I know that, in the past, I’ve tried to escape and run away from whatever cacophony was coming up inside me – tell myself that it isn’t real or believe that if I ignore it [usually by making myself too busy to deal with it], it would go away. Fat chance!
My truth is that I cannot escape my history. It’s part of who I am and who I’ve become. And, while I cannot escape it and may find myself having phantom conversations for a time, I no longer attempt to relive it and fix it and say what I wanted to say in a way which would never be misunderstood or try to make it better or promise to be good or attempt to take it back or strive to not make any missteps ever again. And so, old thoughts and beliefs and values may make their presence known to me from time to time and I know that I no longer live bogged down by that old baggage. It’s not that I don’t get caught at times and it is that I no longer live my life tied to my story – my history.
I know that I don’t live there anymore and I know that the I AM that I AM – the absolute truth of who I am never did anyway. As I connect and reconnect with ME, the strongest voice I hear [and it gets stronger every day] is mine.
What I’m saying is live in the present and choose for now. Choose those things which add colour and energy to your life. Don’t try to run away from your life and your history. And know that you are not your history. When stuff comes up – when shit happens – take the time you need to breathe through it and let it move. And continue to move forward and choose. Don’t get caught up in your story and believe that that is the truth of who you are. So don’t lose sight of who you truly are as you choose now.