I'd like to throw out the question to us both "what do we needlessly hold on to?"
Interesting question, isn't it? This question seems simple on the surface to answer, but upon investigation into the deepest secret parts of our minds, and that being extremely complex. I desperately hung on to guilt, hurt, rage, disappointment and especially pity for years and years and years.
I'd like to explain my own personal reasons for doing this, with the hope that maybe a light will pop on inside your mind, helping you uncover reasons for clinging to your pain.
First of all, I felt that the horror of the experiences that led to all my negative torment deserved the reverence of me for ever paying "homage" to my consequential suffering.
If I didn't stroke and nurture the pain that resulted from living through my hell -- who would?
In my mind, no one else cared! So, I would carry the torch -- and live forever in remembrance of my agony – I was determined to take care of it. If I just let it all go, it would have been like admitting that what happened to me was okay, it doesn't matter, no big deal, forget about it!"
Well, everything that happened is not okay, and will never be okay! What people did to me does matter, is a big deal -- and I certainly won't ever forget about it! So, with a strong and determined protective, obsessive attitude, I kept all these promises to myself, and I "honored” my agony 24/7.
Unfortunately, this mindset eventually took on a life of its own. It gained momentum and power, and led me steadily down the path of nothing short of death. All I could see was the dark, critical, vicious side to life. Simple pleasures did not exist for me, and I became intolerably moody and angry. I trusted nothing and no one. My attitude towards everything became more and more sarcastic and miserable. The heaviness took its toll on my mind, body and spirit -- until I craved actual physical death.
I find this very difficult to write about, and actually become literally heavy in my head, eyes and body when I revisit these thoughts and past lifestyle. The good news is, however, that because of the grace and patience of God, and the tiny spark left with the need to find healing -- that healing is what I did ultimately attain.
My life changed forever when I finally adopted two very simple, but hard to learn philosophies:
• Honor the traumatic memories by learning from them, instead of living inside them. I understand completely the need to show respect and reverence for our times of horror, but we can transfer this reverence into knowledge and understanding. The lessons permanently learned from our times of agony will provide potent influence we can apply to future choices that will have to be made. The knowledge and understanding that comes from torment is ultimately a powerful gift that allows us to find maturity, compassion for others, and certain joy in our future.
• Reassign new positive associations and meaning to your hurtful memories. Almost always, in any bad situation, we can acknowledge the love and caring we put out there to others, which is always precious and of great value in the eyes of the Lord. Even if our love was responded to eventually with hate or betrayal, our love, concern and generosity of spirit needs to be seen as precious wonderful priceless, and worthy of great praise. Honor your goodness in mind body and spirit, and virtue in motive, regardless of how the situation turned out. Own responsibility for the mistakes you made, but feel compassion for yourself, as opposed to self pity.
These points, as well as many others which I cover in my audio e-book; “A Path To Healing”, helped me after a long time of meditation, searching and honest evaluation of all the details surrounding my times of suffering, to find a way back to joy, self understanding, love and humble beautiful new beginnings.
I pray the same for you.
Copyright 2005 Sharon Lowell
Sharon has found her way from debilitating suicidal depression to a new life of joy. Her passion now is helping others who suffer for the devastating affects of depression and anxiety through her new audio e-book; "A Path to Healing" at http://www.apathtohealing.com
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