“And nothing to look backward to with pride and nothing to look forward to with hope.” — Robert Frost
I am growing from, and getting over my sense of lost pride and lost hope. Often, my life seemed poisoned at the very source. I can’t remember a time of innocence, joy, or confidence in myself or in my relationships with others. I was sexually abused when I was a young child. I know the pain from that abuse and the stress associated with “keeping the secret” made me feel unsure of my boundaries and re framed my view of the future to one of anxiety and dread. But things are in fact beginning to change, as I change.
To go forward, I have had to admit to powerlessness. That has been hard for me to do. I must admit that I am powerless to undo the hurt and abuse in my past. And I have learned that I can’t “go it alone”. I have been alone way too long! I have my “new and improved” Self, the Universe, and my close friends to trust and confer with.
I am overcoming my past and turning toward the future with growing hope and trust. And then the present, like the New Year, becomes filled with promise. For those that know me well, also know that this “re framing” was difficult and can share with me the joy in my ability to change my way of thinking.
“Even a stopped clock is right twice a day.” — Marie Ebner von Eschenbach
One of the greatest gifts we can give ourselves is forgiveness. When we remember the past, we often find we were much harder on ourselves than we were on other people. We may no longer even remember some of our misdeeds, but it’s not so easy to erase the effects of self-punishment on our identity and self-esteem.
There is no need for us to punish ourselves. We can apologize to ourselves, just as we do to others. Then, we can forgive ourselves just as we do to others, and just as we are forgiven by them.
When we find it hard to forgive ourselves and let go, there are actions we can take: Reach out to someone, or try to find the real feelings beneath the urge to be so hard on ourselves. We can still be honest and choose gentleness. We can also keep our perspective, seeing things realistically and not creating a catastrophe where there is none. We can turn to the Universe, asking for a higher forgiveness and be assured of the Universe’s understanding and love.