Thursday, June 20, 2013

Tied to the past

There is something for everyone that ties us to a moment (or more than one for that matter) in our past. What ties you to your past? What keeps you from moving forward? What keeps you from moving on?

I wonder sometimes if I am still tied to my past. I know there are moments in my past that I am tied to - moments that are pivotal in my life that I will never forget. But the question I must ask myself: are these moments keeping me from moving forward and moving on? Are these moments keeping me from healing? 

It takes time, counseling and healing, and I know that I have healed wounds, but there are scars left behind and healing really is a never ending battle. 

I know that when I was raised as a child, I grew up learning all the right values and morals. I knew that I was a good kid. I knew right from wrong. How to make a decision on my own. I knew how a man should treat a woman. I knew what were the right things to say and do when the time came. But, when you really get put into a situation, or pushed into a corner, you never really know how that situation is going to look. Nobody can imagine how any situation is going to look because nobody can see the future, all we can do is hope that the lessons that have learned and the morals that have instilled will be enough. 

Now, when life happens, and the right decisions aren't made and we choose the wrong path ... what happens then. Because all our life we have been told: don't do this, don't do that, you need to do what's right, don't do what we did, you know what's right and wrong... we are given mixed messages and we aren't told what to actually do. We aren't given direction. We aren't told what to do when something goes wrong or when we make that wrong decision. There is nobody to talk to and there is nobody to share with when you feel like you have done something wrong or screwed up. 

This is where the problem begins to spiral ... no matter how you were raised, no matter the values you had instilled in you, no matter the situation you are in or were in... at this point you feel devalued, demoralized, and you feel there is no way to come back from this. You cannot be the person you were before. You cannot come back from what you have done. 

So ... you are tied to your past and move forward continuing down that same dark path - spiraling down - further and further. What does it matter what else you do wrong? What does it matter what other things you do? What does it matter how much more you hurt yourself? You are already damaged goods. You are already hurt and you are not good for anyone else anymore.... you are not even good for yourself.

Now... how do you come back from that? How do you even recover? How do you heal?

At what point do you feel valuable again? At what point can you say you have healed? When are you whole? When do you feel free from the darkness? Free from the past and no longer tied down?

So many questions and very few answers. I know this feeling very well. So often in my life I have asked questions and very infrequently have I received the answers to those questions. It is a never ending battle I feel and I know that some day all will make sense. It may be the day when I am in heaven standing and starring down at all of this and seeing how it all weaves together - but it may be sooner. I don't know. All I know is that there is a plan for me and I have to continue on that path. I know that I am tethered to my past, but I am in the process of breaking free from the ties that bind me to my past.

For me - counseling was a large part of laying the foundations for coping skills. Writing has always been a huge mechanism for me as far as healing goes as well. Sharing my story has been the hardest, but the most rewarding and I have also found the most healing. I feel that when I have been able to help someone else I have been able to help myself. Over the last year or so especially, I have seen a significant change in myself. We are talking about a progressive change over the last 12-18 months when one of my most pivotal moments happened 10 years ago.

Healing takes time. Rome wasn't built in a day and scars never go away. This is something that you have to know and live with. Your past will always be there no matter what. There is a difference between it existing and it consuming you. Break free from that that binds you to your past and work toward healing.

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