In my early days of sobriety, I did not want to just be a person who could survive this life and not drink; I wanted to dare myself into the belief that one day I would be a role model of healthy sobriety. I quit drinking, which was a relief, yet as I look back, I realize that this was the easiest part of sobriety. Many people stop drinking yet never spend the time necessary to change the inward ideas that they were trying to drown in the first place.
I had to discover all the emotions I had drowned with alcohol and go through an entire rebirthing process. The alcoholic needed to die so the sober woman could live. The same is true with other experiences when we are healing the energy we have given to the influencers. There must be a spiritual awakening — a name-it-and-claim-it attitude. In other words, behind every apology or awareness of how we have allowed ourselves to be weak, weary and influenced, we must see the deeper truth: I allowed it.
Forgiveness is not complicated. What is complicated is the unwillingness to accept responsibility for our actions and choices and the desire to avoid forgiving ourselves. Once we forgive ourselves for being less than dynamic, magnificent, miracle workers; once we forgive ourselves for settling for less than what the covenant from our Creator states our lives will be; and once we forgive ourselves truly inside and out, we will no longer attract the same actions with others, so we can practice forgiveness with them.
I allowed this. I forgive myself, for I allowed these moments, things and experiences to occur. I allowed the same types of influencers to support my smallness rather than my energetic bigness. Until I name it, I cannot truly claim the healing, the rebirthing or the joy of being the real me.
Some of you who are reading this are no doubt already starting to argue your position. That’s wonderful. It indicates that you are getting to a new place. Be gentle with yourself. You may protest, “I did not allow my parents to treat me so cruelly growing up!” Perhaps not, but you have allowed the repetitive story to play over and over in your life as an adult. You have allowed people in other relationships to treat you in similar ways. The brilliance of our Creator who lies within us is that until we go deep inside ourselves and really process these truths, we will not benefit from the greatest mystery of co-creating our world. We cannot get the blessings of being a co-creator until we truly own the co-creation of our painful lessons and sorrows. We cannot say we co-create with Spirit, God or the Creator while we are blaming God every time we have a bad day.
If you get a divorce, it is important to be willing to dare to get to a place where you can appreciate the gifts of the marriage rather than thinking only about the draining energy and trials of it. The ultimate goal, for the real you to come through, is to get to a complete space of celebration and appreciation while knowing that the energy of “I allowed” must be firmly in place as you’re getting there. We do not want to keep repeating the same patterns, but until we name each pattern and claim it, we will bring new people, careers and experiences into our lives that just produce the same results.
The same idea holds true for moving away from your family. Until you change the energy within yourself and connect to the roles you have played in the family system, you will see that a geographical change heals very little.
Let’s look at the word “family.” As we move through life, we discover that familiar is a very powerful word. We tend to be drawn to new experiences, yet they feel familiar to us. Such an experience is initially welcome. We will say things like: “I feel comfortable with him. There’s something about him that I really resonate with, like a piece of my old favorite luggage.” The root of familiar is familiaris, the Latin word for family or household. Yet our eyes also need to see the ending of this word, “-liar,” which has its own specific English meaning in the Temple Hayes dictionary of life. When we repeat the same patterns over and over again with new people, we have made a liar out of ourselves in affirming we were seeking different. We have given up our seat.
A few years ago, I started realizing that I was repeating some of the same patterns with people. The people were different initially, but the result was always the same. I started writing in my journal, using the word familiar and being very honest with myself about the person and situation I was experiencing. There were two common themes in each situation:
- I was there.
- I allowed it.
This variation of the Serenity Prayer can help us through such a situation:
God grant me the serenity to accept the people I cannot change,
the courage to change the one I can
and the wisdom to know that one is me.