50 Roads #12 – THE ROAD TO SELF-REMEMBERING
(Roads #11-17 are letters to myself for what I wanted to find in therapy – they are filled with questions that I invite you to ask yourself)
I need to find some pieces. And I am so reluctant because I know how tricky fragments can be. I don’t want to cram pieces into the puzzle I’m putting together that just “sort of” fit. I’d rather have a hole where my puzzle is incomplete than a piece that doesn’t go there.
I need to remember myself back together, but once I’ve done all that I can do, I want to get back to living in THIS DAY. I want the parts of me that are trapped in the taped-up boxes of my past experiences to be set free.
Help me to to remember the good parts when I’m fixated on the hard parts. Help me remember the difficult parts when I’m romanticizing the hard parts. Help me to be fair and merciful to everything and everyone involved when parts of me just want to self-medicate by blaming and shaming. Help me remember the broken things back together until the blame and shame are worn out enough to exit the building, and the wisdom that remains can finally be at peace. Help me to make a beautiful room for the wisdom as I see the rest of it to the door.
Help me remember the value of memories, and also the hazards of memories. Help me remember that I’m in search of information to help things make sense, and it’s for healing and wisdom, it’s to bring up things that need healing and there also comes value in the enjoying and reminiscing – but I can get caught in a world that already happened, which makes me miss the world that’s happening now
As I am working to remember, keep bringing to my mind and heart the truth that there are lots of other parts to every experience and every story, not just mine. Help me remember that there are parts that I played in others’ lives that were for their good and learning. And there are parts that others played in my life that were for my good and learning. And that both of these kinds of parts and easily be interpreted in ways that make us all suffer. Help me hold on to the things I learned and let go of the hurtful parts that I don’t understand. Help me let myself off the hook and let others off the hook.
Help me remember how hard it is to be a human being, for all of us. And that we all are seeing a different part of the dinosaur and so my memories of something might be totally different from another’s who was standing right next to me. And all of us can be “right” at the same time. Help me accept that sometimes I’m the good guy in someone’s story, and sometime’s I’m the bad guy, all depending on where we are all standing.
Help me to remember that even if I’d make different choices with what I know now, that I did make some really solid and good decisions too. It’s the same with everyone. Help me to be merciful with myself and with others.
Help me to know that I had a big part in almost all of the things that still bring me pain. Help me know when to correct my thinking and also help me not to gaslight myself when I want to place more blame and responsibility on myself than is needed or appropriate. Help me let things go when scrutiny is trying to take over the usefulness of a memory.
Help me remember that I’m just not ever going to be able to remember or recall everything. And that when I strain to try to remember, my brain will try to fill in the blanks and add more to the story. Help me peel things away and not add more. Help me to not indulge in do add-ons to medicate myself or tip things over to my favor, or my fault. Help me not to embellish to dramatize or take a shortcut to things making sense. Help me not to take an old memory out of its context and put it into now and add what it might mean now rather than what it meant or didn’t mean back then.
Help me to stay in my own experience and not try to pull others’ experiences in so that I don’t feel so naked and alone. Help me not to waste time attaching meaning to things that I merely observed. It muddies up everything that I was actually a part of.
Help me to remember the destructive force of witch hunts. Help me not to want to burn myself at the stake, or burn anyone else at the stake. Give me mercy mercy mercy mercy mercy. Help me to give others people and other memories the same mercy that I would want if they were remembering me.
Help me remember that every part made up the whole picture, and that sometimes there’s a piece of my puzzle that looks really ugly and horrific but it was actually just the corner of the larger picture, and I might have misinterpreted it before I had all of the other pieces.
Help me to be an advocate and not an accuser whenever possible – for myself and for others.
Help me to remember that some of my memories are not mine alone. Some of my feelings and fears and traumas were inherited. Help me remember the science of epigenetics, not just that it goes backwards, but that it will also go forward…that I am literally participating in what will be either the generational trauma or the generational wisdom. I am deciding right now whether cycles will continue with me, or be broken with me – according to what I cling to and what I let go of.
Help me to remember not to invest time in trying to fix something that’s already in the ground decaying…let nature do what nature does, turn it back into dust. Help me remember that all of the things I remember that I am not a part of anymore have moved on in their life cycle. They are either dust or different, just like I am. Help me to remember to let myself change, let people change, let situations change, don’t hold them hostage to how I remember them.
Help me remember the together more than the apart, but being honest about what both things feel like at different times. So when it’s right, help me remember that the apart is sometimes healthier than the together.
Help me remember the wisdom of timing — that just because it’s not good now doesn’t mean it wasn’t good then and vice versa.
Help me remember that there were short term gifts or lessons and just because the time together was so short, it doesn’t mean that those lessons and gifts weren’t meant to be carried through my whole life.
Help me remember that mistakes and disasters are often the next step to a better way that couldn’t be traveled on any other route.
Help me not to want things back so fiercely that I block out the memories of why they are not a part of my life anymore. Help me remember the bad chemical reactions so I don’t go back to explosive situations and people just because I’m remembering only the good.
Help me remember how I feel with certain people, in certain places, and how my body is always trying to tell me the truth for THAT moment, and that even if I felt good somewhere once, that was for that moment…and even if I felt unsafe somewhere once, that was for that moment. Let wisdom guide my next step.
Help me remember what nature has taught me about how things actually are. Help me to ground myself in those ancient stories of how a rock became a rock…how a tree got as big as it is, how a river is never the same from moment to moment. Help me remember how an animal is just doing what its instinct drives it to do. How a flower becomes fruit and seeds. How the sun keeps rising and setting every day, no matter what. Let nature help things make sense and help me not fool myself into thinking that somehow I am singled-out for a life that is not connected to an interconnected plan for me from the past and a plan for me for the future. Just like every other living thing. I am part of nature.
Help me remember that when something falls apart, that doesn’t mean that everything else is crumbling. Help me see what’s always been solid. And help me see that other things were solid for exactly as long as they were supposed to be, and just because they disintegrated, it doesn’t mean they weren’t solid and whole, with absolute structural integrity before. And it also doesn’t mean they were supposed to stay in that state forever. Help me see that there are seasons for everything – and that a tree isn’t bad just because it loses its leaves.
Help me open the boxes in the storage unit of my psyche until I’m so sick of all of the old and outdated stacks and stacks and stacks of things I thought I just had to keep, that I’m ready to have the biggest bonfire ever.
Help me remember my power, and not just my weakness.
Let’s do this,
As I wrote these letters, I was learning that I have to give my mind the itinerary that I WANT to travel, or my mind will just take me to the roads that it knows, out of habit.
I hope that as you read these letters, you’ll jot down any instructions that you might want to give to your own heart and your own brain, and that you’ll know that you have the strength and courage to go down these roads too, even if you don’t feel it yet.
Thank you for coming with me on The Road of Self-Remembering, further on down this journey, I will tell you where this road took me.
Tomorrow, we will go down The Road to Self-Responsibility. As always, thank you for being with me.