leaving to drive home after a doctor appointment yesterday, I drove past an empty building. I knew it used to be a Brick Oven pizza, we had eaten there, I remembered where it was, but the main reason I knew that is used to be a Brick Oven is that they removed all of the lettering and labels from the building, but due to the never relenting southern Utah sun, the building has been marked with every letter and logo. A deep shaded wording sticks out for you to see, BRICK OVEN PIZZA on every side of the vacant building and lot signs.
this reminded me of the work I've been doing in my inner work and what my clients have been doing as well, letting go of the past. usually when we think of craptastic stuff that happened to us in our past, we either 1. ignore it and pretend it isn't there (I call this the scarlet o'hara syndrome), or we 2. make it a part of our identity. we label it as "bad" "wrong" etc and it goes with us everywhere. Both of these ways of "dealing" with the past don't work, because neither of them allow what we call, FEELING of your past.
when we fully allow and feel our past, we aren't covering up. we aren't making excuses. we aren't saying "well they just didn't know better and/or I didn't know better", no we FEEL all of it. the pain, upset, betrayal, sadness, loss, despair...ALL OF IT. Without excusing or labeling. We just feel it. This is hard work, but it's possible.
The cool thing that happens when you grow your spiritual muscles enough to fully feel something, is you are able to completely and fully let it go. And when we say "let it go" we don't mean just removing the labels and logos we had attached to that memory, we repaint the building, give it a new logo, new bold letters and announce that an organic sandwich company now resides here. eventually you even forget that it was a Brick Oven at all. all fo the physical and mental reminders are gone. and time slowly helps your brain forget that it was 'Bad' "Difficult' etc.
No, eventually when we fully allow and heal and do what I call "trauma work", we can see all of the amazing and wonderful things that have come from what happened to us. We are stronger, braver, more compassionate, caring. We have better boundaries, we can recognize unhealthy patterns, we totally surrender and let go. TOTALLY SURRENDER AND LET GO.
doesn't that sound really nice? yes.
because we no longer can just "deal" with our past and even current uncomfortable situations. no, to heal it, we have to feel it. to heal it we have to feel it. to heal it we have to feel it. sing it with me!
and to fully heal it, is to do so without judgement. we feel without judging the feelings. we allow everything in and give it space. and our inner awareness, and our inner stillness, that healing atonement power we have given to us and is within us and that amazing grace from God... that heals it.
we don't keep passing the building and reading the sign and being reminded of what used to be there, we eventually don't even remember it. that is truly healing. we aren't triggered anymore, and if we are, it's just a passing thought or feeling, not a gripping sense of foreboding, anxiety or crippling depression. it is beautiful.
I don't think there's anything wrong with pizza, and I am sad brick oven is gone because I enjoyed it, but I'm glad I saw that building yesterday and was reminded of what amazing work this healing is and how much I love helping other people on their own paths to wholeness and oneness with all that is.