A friend recently posted a letter on social media. A letter written by her younger self to her absentee parent. Asking to be acknowledged and openly expressing that she didn’t feel loved.
Reading this broke my heart.
So many of us carry the scars related to what we craved and didn’t receive. These childhood memories, and sometimes the artifacts, that bring us right back to the old hurts.
But it got me to thinking… why do we hold on to things, even though we know that when we look at them, it will bring back painful memories?
If can feel like looking at the lights of an oncoming train. We know it’s coming, we know it’s going to hurt. But we don’t move. We just wait for the hit.
There’s a yearning tied to these things. A vision of what could have been. Of what that person might have been to us in our life. Of what we didn’t have and what we missed.
Every time, it reminds us of the hole in our chest. And our hearts hurt.
And yet, you know that every single time you look at these things, it’s going to bring up the old pain and the old memories and make you sad. Reaffirming the pain not only in your mind but also the visceral feeling within your body that goes with the memory.
This is one of the reasons why we don’t heal. Our subconscious continues to draw us in because the feelings are familiar. It’s as if our body craves the uncomfortable feelings.
There’s a familiarity to that old story and the way we feel. And no matter how uncomfortable we feel, it’s like that oncoming train.
It’s like by holding on to the memento that you’re holding on to your only connection to the person. Yet that thing is keeping you tied to the pain of the old relationship.
So, what do you do?
Being sad keeps the energy of the emotions locked within you. Sadness is anger turned inward.
It’s time to get angry!
There is nothing you can do to change the situation of the past. The only thing you can do is change the way you think and feel about it.
We’re taught to not go there, to just face forward. True, that we don’t want to dwell. Ignoring it doesn’t work either though.
It is only when we make the active choice to release the past, and do something about it, that we’re able to heal the wound.
It’s time to write a new letter.
Write the letter now as an adult to that person, expressing the pain and the frustration and the anger that you felt, not only as a child, but now. All the things that were missed because they didn’t get to experience you as a child. The promises made and broken. The things not experienced now.
Allow the words to flow in all the ways they want to be expressed. You may experience tears through your words. Your soul wants to express itself, and it’s all perfect. This energy has wanted to come out since your early years. You may just not have known how.
There’s nothing worth holding on to the old pain and the old emotions, because you’re no longer that hurt child. Yet it’s that young child that wants to heal.
Once you’re done writing, allow yourself to breathe. Take a walk in nature, soak in a salt bath. Take some time to nurture yourself.
Then look at who’s in your life that fills you up with love and happiness. Who are the people in your life that support you now? These are the people and their beautiful energy to surround yourself with.
Because love and happiness are the feelings to focus on, as you’ve release the old pain and hurts.
Because you are loved.
And what to do with the letter and the old mementos?
Have a burning ceremony.
There is something incredibly cathartic when you watch not only the letter you just wrote, but the old artifacts, burn and turn into smoke and ash. All of that old energy released. Feeling the open spaces within you and around your heart.
It is when you make the conscious choice to say yes, I am choosing to free myself of the pain of the past that you create a different today and future for yourself.
This is the magic of letting go.