Ghosts From My Past
She will not let up. Try as I may to give her the cold shoulders, she ‘attacks’ from another angle.
We met again by chance and although my pulse raced with joy initially, my desire was to take things slowly. She waited for a few months and then she struck. “It’s time to talk,” was the sum of her very public message.
Angry that she aired our business so publicly on Facebook and without my consent, I shot back a long message to her, detailing not only my vexation but venting my residual baggage. There was no letting go of any of it for me.
Then she went silent and for weeks I heard nothing in response.
Yesterday, another Sunday in 2009 and again spent in solitude as my husband was away, a response finally popped up on my laptop.
“You have been on my mind,” she wrote.
I read her words with a heart as cold as the early winter in Southern Alberta. There was no apology in her letter. She said she did not feel she had anything to say sorry about, except that she has loved me for so long.
Letting Go: It’s Too Late!
“Too late for us,” was my terse response to her. “I have no time to waste.”
Who could blame me? I was not the one who walked away without a backward glance. How many years have gone by and nothing from her and now through one email she thought everything was okay? Why would she think that letting go of the pain would have been easy for me to do?
“Ridiculous!” I thought. “It requires much more than that.”
How many sleepless nights over the years I have spent, praying and wishing for even a word, a card, something, anything that would say she loved me?
The pain and suffering endured at the hands of friends, lovers and strangers alike with no one to turn to but my shadow, my sad reflection in the mirror.
And now that my heart – battered, broken, shattered – is slowly healing through the Grace of God and with the love of my daughter, husband and dear friends, she turns up and wants a piece of me? She expected me to simply embrace her, letting go of all the memory of being abandoned?
God’s Grace Is Mysterious
Hang on…hold it…wait a second….”Could this be part of God’s Grace?”
That thought flickered through my mind only momentarily. My fingers moved faster. I drummed out another cold response. I was getting better at this – hardening my heart towards this woman and all she represented.
As I drove home from work earlier, a compact disc of songs that I want played at my eventual Memorial Service was on. I had made it years ago, in another place, in another time that I was also letting go.
“It is well with my soul, it is well, it is well, with my soul…,” were the words streaming through my Tacoma’s speakers.
Really? the Voice in my heart asked.
Then why are there a couple empty places…spots quietly earning to be held, softly and gently…wanting…no still needing to be healed?
Why did you cry yourself back to sleep last night after awakening from a dream that felt so real? Why did that face that you only see in dreams appear again last night, sharing with you her struggles, her pain and asking to be understood?
“Ping!” my laptop gave out as it announced the arrival of a new message.
It was another from her.
Letting Go Made Hard By Cell Memory?
Cell memory – “a theory that states the brain is not the only organ that stores memories or personality traits, that memory as a process can form in other systems in the body and can be stored in organs such as the heart.”
As I grow older the idea that the cells of my body have stored occurrences and experiences that had a profound impact on me has grown.
What else could account for the deep sense of loss and pain that recurs even when life is ‘going good’? This happens to all of us – say on the anniversary of the passing of a loved one many years ago. Intellectually you might have come to terms with this passing, you might even have come to recognize that the pain your loved one was suffering has ended and they have moved on to a ‘better place’. However, either approaching the anniversary of the death or what would have been the person’s birthday – you sense yourself going into what at first felt like an inexplicable place of sorrow. And then, “ah-ah,” you look at the calendar and realize why.
I have also come to believe that for each place of brokenness inside of me (and you) that memory calls onto itself an event or a series of event for the sake of healing. The energy within me attracts what it ‘knows’ my soul needs, even when I think “all is well.” The process of letting go continues.
October is a month of trauma and tragedy for me and every year something happens to remind me of those places of brokenness in my life that are awaiting attention. Life is so amazing that if you do not get the message, it will send someone who will hold up a mirror to you.
(To be continued)
This is a very personal story about a period in my life that taught me the most profound and last lesson that was needed for me to let go of emotional suffering. The hope is that it might help even one of you with letting go of anything that is still holding you back along the journey to inner peace and happiness. It was first published in 2009 and since then I have had further practice in letting go, including of my then husband who I remain grateful to for his support through this time of my life.
Subscribe and receive an email update tomorrow when Part 2 of this short story series on letting go continues. Did you miss the introduction to Letting Go: Too Late? Have a read and share your comments and experiences with me. Part 2 and the final installment of this series are available.
If you are Canadian, do enjoy this Thanksgiving long weekend. Be blessed and be a blessing to even one today!