Wednesday, March 9, 2016

Are You Picking At Your Past?

I’ve been trying to share this lesson for some time now. The idea in my mind was clear, but I couldn’t conceptualize it clearly enough to share with anyone else.  Every good teacher knows that if you can’t conceptualize, you can’t operationalize.

Anyway, this morning around one, I was awakened by the feeling of something wet around my collar bone. I knew that our weather was expected to turn towards summer, so I assumed that it and I had done so.

Then it occurred to me, that I didn’t feel hot or wet anywhere else. So, began to I wiggle my toes and fingers, just like I’d learned to do when I was a kid having nightmares of winged creatures trying to ride on my back.

“Wiggle your fingers and toes,” my mother told me. “That way, your body will wake your mind up from the dream.” I was a young kid, but I remember thinking, isn’t it the other way around?” I thought it but didn’t have to say it because it worked, and later, I even learned how to re-enter a dream recreating the outcomes.

But, I digress, or do I?

Anyway, this morning, I got myself out of the bed and into my bathroom. When I turned on the lights, I was shocked, but even more amazed to realize that I had scratched open the wound of a gnat bite. I was bleeding profusely.

I went to wipe the wound and stopped suddenly. “This is it.” I said to myself.

This is what it’s like to go picking at your past.

Stay with me, because, I’m excited and in pain.

In our state of sleep and lack of awareness, we pick at problems from the past; so much so that they bleed in the here and now; so much so, that the problem becomes new.

I stood in the mirror and thought about the things I’ve picked at my children for, because something in their present reminded me of something from my past. (We call this preventive, but sometimes we open an old wound and sometimes, we create a new one.)

I thought about past mistakes that I pick at long enough to find myself making the same mistake or worse, feeling so guilty about the past that I can’t move forward in my present.

 I eventually grabbed the peroxide and mercurochrome---yes, I likes to kick it old school. As I cleaned and treated the wound I marveled at life’s ability to heal.

We are made for renewal, but if we keep going back and scratching at our past, we will find that it’s impossible to move forward. Now wiggle your toes and fingers and wake up to your now.

Be you, be well, be healed.
Bertice Berry, PhD.

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