Minnesota Musings

Drawing on the Past

Looking in the past and being consciously aware is really living in the present. And because I know I am doing that, I have a choice whether to stay in that place or let it go and bring myself to a different place. That is to say, it is okay to linger in the past while living in the present, but so often people linger there for so long and get swept away by the emotional connection to the story as a way to define themselves.

This is not a judgment, but an observational fact based on experience. We all do it. The difference is being aware of it in the now so that we do not use it to define who we are, but rather a way to inform us.

I look to the past as a way to help pass on what I have learned through experience. I do not expect that people will get it, but on the other hand they may. I just put it out there.

Many people are locked into their stories. This immobilizes them internally like a chunk of psychological concrete. And it takes a major life crisis such as an illness or death to crack it open. Once the crack has opened the light of reality shines through. Getting even just a glimpse of that light they realize they want more and go on to make the necessary changes.

There is a reason people use the term foundation when describing one’s life. It is so they can stay in one place. And the reality is that life is insecure and we just never know. In reality there is no foundation, but the stories and emotions we cling to are the mix that makes that psychological concrete. It is not as strong as we like to make it out to be. As evidence of what the world is going through right now.

Love first blew open my foundation and I have never been the same since. Now I have tried to repair and patch it by reinventing my story and attaching emotions, but over time life had other plans and didn’t allow me to wallow in that story for long.

The other times that blew me wide open had to do with death on both a grand scale (9/11) and two family members. I found that we never get over these kinds experiences, it just becomes a part of us.

Getting divorced, moving from one state to another then to a culturally different country (Japan) were other major foundation cracking experiences. As difficult as these were to transcend and allow myself to remain open, they were all worth it in the end.

It does seem these days that I do not need a Michael Bay-like drama to blow me wide open. It is a choice to be open now. Sure I know that there will be more loss and difficulties that lie ahead. I don’t pretend to be naïve to that fact. I just know that right now I am open to the message and guidance from within. I am honoring this opportunity, as I don’t know how long this will continue.

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