Memories. In January we set resolutions and goals and plans for the New Year but what do we do with the past? In clearing out my attic I have unearthed boxes of memories from old toys to photographs, pictures and records. All of these objects stir up memories and with these emotional feelings.
One of my actions for the early part of this year is to address some difficult feelings that I have about the past and work at trying to reach a point of forgiveness around some actions and activity that happened to me in the past. Digging deep it is nasty stuff which I am struggling to let go of and just smiling and getting on with it has been more of a grimace and a muttered rant!
Reading about others experiences and some positive affirmations has made me suddenly have a realisation about my memories regarding particular experiences that continue to cause me distress. It was not about forgiving others that has been the block but the forgiving of me. I still have attachment to past struggles and indeed to my complicity in behaviour that I now find utterly horrid. I struggle to understand how I was pulled into values and attitudes that I would not normally tolerate and so therefore blame myself for being involved in such horridness.
So here I have been carrying around a large bag of nasty bitter angry memories. On top of this I feel blame and even worse shame at my own behaviour. I am sure you can imagine “Missus who does she think she is” has been having a field day! “Call yourself a nice person? Ha! You are insincere and untruthful” she whispers in my ear!
Enough. This must stop and I must rethink my memories. I cannot change the past and I cannot change my actions. But what I can accept is that through my open heartedness I have been drawn into emotions that created behaviour that I now feel shame about it. It is my belief and trust in others that led me to make wrong turns and wrong judgements of others. Indeed there may have been times when folk have played right into my openness (remember the lame ducks in last year’s blog?). The other challenge in this is not being able to share nor have these experiences validated. When attempting to share these experiences with others “Missus who does she think she is” makes me feel like a big drama queen or a bitter old bag. I feel foolish at being so manipulated and pushed so morally off course.
I am not sure if I can stop being so open hearted and trusting as this is who I am. I can however stop meeting folk and allowing people to emotionally bully me. Rather than wasting my energy on trying to save others I need to take care of me. So I am forgiving myself. I am saying sorry to me. I am not forgetting the past but I am working hard at forgiveness. Time to reflect, learn and not get drawn in again.
Although I moved some months ago I am finally clearing the last bits of my house to sell and as I said earlier have been up in the attic. Naturally some of what I have kept is just stuff ( boxes of files on out of date courses – remember OHPs?) but I have also found the wonderful Brio train set, my bag of 1982 vogue magazines and to smallish boy’s excitement record player and records. This last week smallish boy has now set record player up in his room and we have been listening to The Beatles, Pink Floyd and Abba! Yes the whole collection of teen girl memories is there. This includes those precious singles bought by boyfriends of the past and Albums which were saved up for and still in my mind establish “my cool”. This includes my teen heroines Patti Smith and Debbie Harry.
Of course all these memories of my “yoof” mean little to anyone else. Smallish boy has just discovered he can make Michael Jackson sound like a Chipmunk by playing him fast and Abba Waterloo (my first single) very funny if played slowly. I almost feel indignant as if he somehow offending my memories and then I just laugh. Smallish boy has no memory of record players, of A or B sides, Top of the Pops or of saving all pocket money for just one song. He cannot remember being able to use Dad’s polished gramophone that looked like a sideboard to play my songs.
It is funny as we now live in a house of headphones. Hearing music wafting down the stairs reminds me , reminds me of drawing pictures, making embroidery, reading books, Sundays dinners, broken hearts, being in love, of being young!
Well last push to move next weekend. A pile of rubbish for the tip has been established but what to with my parent’s 1950s bedroom chairs?