It’s just time.
It’s past time.
It’s long overdue.
It’s time to put the past to rest.
Sure, I and even you who may read this post may find some strange sort of relief by rehashing issues from your past and trying to dissect each painful piece of it. There may be some slight relief that one could feel from assigning blame to the correct person, circumstance, and situation.
But wouldn’t it be better to just put it ALL to rest?
My sister, whom I happen to think is one of the most amazing souls on the planet, said something quite profound to me. She told me that she told another relative of ours who we’ve both had issues communicating with in the past these words ” All that you need to know and all that really matters is that I love you”.
It may seem simple at first, but I challenge you to meditate on that simple statement and let it awaken in you like it did in me.
We spend so much time in counseling, therapy, talking, arguing, fussing, pleading, demanding. We state and restate our positions. We phrase and rephrase our questions. We indite, we accuse, we blame.
But what would happen if we skipped all of that and just said, “Even if you don’t understand everything I say or do and vice versa; even if I disappoint you and vice versa. Even if I fall short of your expectations and you, mine. The only thing you really need to know from me, from this point on is that I LOVE YOU”.
What would happen to all of our relationships if we made communicating our LOVE, not our right, the main mission?
What would happen if we stopped in the middle of arguments and said to ourselves, “You know? The only thing you really need to understand is not that I need you to pick up your dirty clothes or stop hanging out so much with your boys. The only thing that you ever need to know and be clear about from this point on is that I love you”. I wonder how that would revolutionize our relationships.
As I was talking to my sister, we spoke briefly on how parents can be so critical of their children’s mistakes, even making them feel ashamed and pushing them away. I asked the question, “Why do parents do this?” When the answer came flooding into my mind, I could scarcely contain it. It is because when a child disappoints a parent, their parent’s response to the disappointment is directly tied to how they themselves were treated when they made mistakes. They didn’t get a break. They didn’t get compassion. They were condemned, shamed, shunned. But what would happen if we gave to others what we so desperately wanted and needed? What would happen if we dropped the chips on our shoulders and just decided that we didn’t have to punish everyone for every misery we’ve ever felt and experienced? What if we gave them the grace, mercy and understanding we wish someone had given to us when we were in a sad state?
So that’s why I’m determined to let the past rest in peace.
Sure, I made a whole heap of mistakes back then. I didn’t always use my best judgement. I screwed up royally sometimes. But I’m ready to forgive myself and move on. I’m ready to walk into my present and give my children the gift of a compassionate mom who gives them what I didn’t receive back then. When they disappoint, stumble and maybe even fall, I want to climb into the hole, the ditch, the mud and the mess and let them know they’re worth saving. I didn’t have that when I was coming up. I didn’t receive that when I needed it.
But guess what? I’m now in a position to give it to someone else.
And isn’t that fact alone worth letting the past rest in eternal peace?