According to the U.S. government the top three resolutions are: lose weight, volunteer, and quit smoking. None of these are on my list. The resolution I chose for 2014, is forgiveness, beginning with myself. Like so many others, I’ve always been my worst critic, being harder on myself than most anyone else.
The past couple of weeks have been filled with a variety of emotions, and for the first time in my life, I wished the holidays would just be over before they even began. This attitude is so unlike me, and I do not like this me at all. I’ve tried to convince myself this is probably normal and to be expected since it is the first Christmas without either of my parents. Our life-long holiday traditions have changed and are forever gone. Of course this makes me sad, but, there was more. The constant tears, agitation, and resentment over the past couple of months has had me confused. I sensed this emotional regression was much, much more than, the holidays and missing my parents.
My first clue something was wrong, was at a recent gathering, someone made a comment and it wasn’t in a negative way or meant to be hurtful, but it brought forth an instant ache and resentment. This wasn’t like me to feel this way. This type of thing has happened several times over a couple of months. I still wasn’t sure exactly what was going on with me or what I had to do about it, but I knew it was coming from within, and not from other people.
I read a spiritual horoscope in my health magazine and it made me think. The reading said, “Meditate and release the past eight years (or more) of challenges in matters of the heart and career.” This piqued my curiosity since horoscopes usually generalize and don’t mention specific time frames. So just for the heck of it, I jotted a list of events next to the year beginning in 2005 and that’s when the real epiphany came. Holy Cow, a lot has happened in the past eight years.
Unfortunately, the six or seven items for each year were all the negative ones…so much for all my positive thinking self work. Each circumstance I had written had left a wound on my heart, a wound that I have ignored. We all know what happens to ignored wounds.
These things, life events, have affected me more than I have been willing to admit. We have been on a roll for the past eight or nine years with one stressful thing coming closely to the next. It’s just life, right? Everyone struggles, but the ones from within, for me, are the hardest to deal with and to share. (The 27 edits on this post may be evidence of that)
Normally, when reading my positive-thinking daily/weekly email subscriptions, (Guideposts, Jonathan Lockwood Huie, Purpose Fairy, Hay House) I pass over the content on forgiveness. I smile and think, yea, at least I don’t need that … I’m not angry with anyone, and thankfully, as far as I know, no one is angry with me.
So, for the past couple of weeks these all-consuming emotions have had me feeling as though I am a ship with an over-sized load of anguish, guilt, and disappointment, in myself. I’ve been carrying this cargo for a long while now, eight years to be exact. All the I should of’s, and I could of’s, and the why didn’t I do it this way, or that way, all the self-doubt and blame, always feeling I should have done more or I could have done better.
As I wrote the list, all those heart wrenching memories flooded forward and reopened the wounds that had never completely closed. Finally, making me realize I’ve held myself accountable for so many of the not-so-good, huge events in our lives since they have happened. (some way beyond my control) I forgot one important thing though, and that was to deal with and not just trudge on and push aside my emotions from the past. I thought I had forgiven everyone for everything and moved on, but I forgot the first important step and that was to forgive myself.
I dealt with pending depression through the years by reading, reflecting, and posting, Psalms, positive quotes, and affirmations and I’m thankful I did, they worked! All those encouraging wonderful words have pulled me through some mighty tough times, along with some truly extraordinary friends that have been there for me every inch of the way. But, now it’s time to quit ignoring my past and deal with the what needs to be done, which is; forgiving myself. Then and only then, can I thoroughly forgive all the others that have inflicted any wounds.
How do I begin this process? These things didn’t happen over night so, I knew the healing wouldn’t either. I am about to embark on another on-going, hopefully habit-forming life change. Probably because of the time of year it is, or maybe just meant to be, article after article has shown up in my email all having to do with forgiveness. I’m so grateful!
I’m beginning to resolve my inner conflicts by following some of the suggestions in the link below by, Iyanla Vanzant.
In 2014 my resolution . . . To work on forgiving and loving myself more so I can be my best for others.
My new mantra is . . . “I am exactly who I was created to be. I was that person back then, and I am now, and I will always be—-ME. (Doing the best I can at any given moment).”
Happy 2014 to everyone reading this, and may this years discoveries and resolutions, bring you health, happiness, and inner peace.
Love is in the air!