It always amazes me how deep our grief goes. For many of us we don’t even know how much grief, how much sadness we hold inside us. We live, we breath, we move through life, but we age, we have times of depression, of struggle, of illness, of feeling something isn’t quite ok, but we often can’t name it. We are often encouraged to let the past go, to live in the now, plan for the future but our bodies, our minds, and actions tell us if this is working..or not.
But its not so much us holding onto the past, it is just that the past holds onto us when we haven’t admitted the truth of it. It’s not so much about the stories even: there are so many sad stories, so much loss in many peoples lives. It IS about locking up all that grief, all those fears; it is about how much we are encouraged to “not cry” as children; how we are taught to control ourselves; to convince others and then ourselves we feel better, we feel ok.
The truth is, for many of us, we can believe we “got over it”, but we haven’t. How do we know? Because all through the rest of our lives that unhealed, unfelt pain impacts us. We play out the hurt in our daily lives and our relationship with ourselves and with others. My father left when I was about 4 years old. I met him a couple of times as an adult and each time it didn’t work out. He just couldn’t do it. Now you could say, come on you hardly knew him, let it go, forgive and forget. I thought I had many times, but the truth is I never cried when he left, even though I remember him walking down the pathway to his car, I never cried. I remember feeling scared, but I never cried. Over the years, I thought about him, sometimes longed for him, dreamed he loved me – somewhere out there. And when that failed, I imagined my dad to be like Dick Van Dyck in Chitty Chitty Bang; a little self absorbed, but ultimately loving his children beyond anything else.
I was never someone’s “special girl” and I thought I had eventually accepted it. The truth was I had just numbed myself to the pain of losing him, of feeling and being unloved by my parent, of never feeling good enough to be loved. The truth is I have played out my deep fear of abandonment in every relationship: trusting no-one really, waiting for them to discover I just wasn’t lovable. I tried to be in control, end things before they did. My lack of self love took me into relationships I never should have had. LIke many women I mistook someone desiring me as love or completely convinced myself I was better on my own. And I was in complete denial of my anger towards my father for walking out that day and never coming back.
In the past I have tried many ways to heal: therapy, healing, workshops, positive thinking, EFT, yoga, affirmations etc. They helped, but nothing like what I have discovered in the last two years. These days I pray or try to pay attention to things that trigger the emotions (The Law of Attraction is God’s hint to us about what we need to heal and what is good) .
Tonight, for me, it was something as simple as a movie: The Last Song. A movie about a daughter and her estranged father. Over the course of the summer they heal their relationship and it was as I watching them, and feeling his real love for her, it really hit me that I had no memory of any father – daughter moments. That my father just couldn’t do it, that he didn’t love me for who I was, in fact didn’t love me at all as far as I could tell. The tears came and came, and then I realised it was not a personal reflection on me as a person. Gosh I was a child. It wasn’t me, he just couldn’t go there. I cried for not having a father, but I really cried for all the times I had felt small and unlovable and it had stopped me following my dreams. And I had many dreams and wanted many adventures. But my inner pain and the feelings of inadequacy it created, stopped me. Letting out that pain, crying tears of real grief are what reveals these truths. When we hit the real grief, the causal pain and release it we feel lighter and brighter. It is truly a weight off your heart.
It is correct that Truth can set you free, but real Truth also needs Love, unconditional Love, God’s Love and Love of self. Truth is the key and Love is the hand that turns it.