On my previous post, http://apathoflight.wordpress.com/2014/10/04/choosing-to-be-vulnerable/, I mentioned remembering a little piece of my childhood that has had impact on my life. Not an easy one to remember or even want to mention. Yet, I feel like writing a bit more about it, and hope that it will help others process this kind of experience or similar ones, in case it happened to them.
With my parents being divorced, I had to spend every single weekend at my grandmother’s house. My dad had signed on his divorce agreement that he would come visit me on the weekends. He did visit, but only 5-7 times a year, mostly on birthdays, holidays or some other kind of celebration, to which his presence was highly expected. On all the other weekends, I would just sit there and wait for him. Already understanding waiting for someone who won’t come was a waste of time, I distracted myself with other things – playing with the dog, studying, trying to make friends with the neighbors’ kids, etc. Sometimes, the other people in the house – all adults – would take me to places, probably feeling compassionate for “the abandoned kid”. After my grandfather died, my grandmother lived with her longtime helper (who was very sweet and I considered as a third grandma of mine), the helper’s son (who was sweet to me also and I considered an uncle of mine), and her own younger son, my father’s brother. He married a couple of times, moved away, divorced, and came back to this house many times. When I was ten years old or so, I remember this uncle approaching me one day in a different way. He did not see me as I little kid anymore. He was right, I now looked different with a pre-teen body getting formed. I am not going into details here because it is pretty personal, but I do want to say that I did not like that approach and felt highly intimidated.
Fortunately, before things got worse, at thirteen years old, I had a choice, I finally got a saying on those weekend visits and changed them in a big way. I now would go when I could and maybe even switch to visiting during the week, when only my grandma and her helper were home. I never told my mom or dad about what had happened, just chose to keep it in, to avoid my uncle and watch out for men in general. By no means am I complaining about what happened. I believe the Universe brings us experiences and we decide what to do with them. I decided to close my heart but also to get stronger from this. And when I was seventeen, this same uncle gave me a ride to a place one day and tried to reach for me in an inappropriate way while in the car, and I reacted in a surprisingly powerful way. I showed him my boundaries, said goodbye and left the car. He was speechless; I was empowered! Without a word about it, my body language told it all. I couldn’t believe he was still thinking about that after all those years…
My father’s side of the family was a challenging way for me to see the world. I never understood it much, my mother’s side had everyone trying to get along and doing teamwork, while this side was so disconnected… Nonetheless, I chose to forgive them. Over and over. Maybe I had no choice, maybe I had learned it from other lives prior to this one. But forgiving them served me well, otherwise I would certainly get sick from holding grudges. Interestingly enough, since I was very young, I kept telling my father, as I heard him complaining repeatedly about things that happened during his life, that he should move on from that and let go of the grudges. He would be surprised with my suggestion, stop complaining but not do anything about it. That was his choice. I, on the other hand, chose to forgive all of them, and would even visit my uncle, who married a sweet and loving cousin of ours, periodically as he aged.
More than ten years later, this uncle of mine passed away while I was living out of the country, very far away from him. A few days later, he visited me in dreams. He came wearing almost nothing and sat down next to me. There was a big light from where he came. I sat with him, and he started talking. He apologized for what he had done, without getting into details as we both knew. In the dream, even though I am not sure if I was conscious or not, I chose to look him in the eye, and from a place of power, like the ride in the car years before, I told him I forgave him and he could be in peace about that. He would probably have to pay a few more visits to other women before feeling peaceful though, but my part was clear. No strings attached anymore; we both owned our lessons from that. And not having that resistance inside me makes me feel lighter.
We all have been through issues in life, and sometimes we hold onto some of them… I recommend you sit quietly for a few minutes. Take a few deep breaths, and try to relax completely. Then ask yourself if there is any grudge you’ve been holding onto. Maybe it is recent, maybe it is from a long time ago. Sometimes we even forget what happened but hold onto some negativity about someone we once had trouble with. Ask yourself if the grudge is still necessary… Do you still need this inside you? Would you be able to transform it into something more positive? Would you be able to let it go? Do you feel ready to try to let it go? One of the quotes below gives a hint to see if you are ready or not. And, remember, if you feel ready or not, it doesn’t matter, love yourself anyway.