Let the past go

You know how sometimes it feels like all the stars are aligned just right for an epiphany to happen?

Right now and right here in this moment I’m experiencing a striking realization that I do not have to hold onto my past.

For the first time I feel like I could discard every single journal and/or writing I’ve saved for the last 30 years. Perhaps it’s time to move forward without dragging my burdensome past along with me.

Could I really do this?

I really am not sure but the thought is there. The idea is liberating! For the last 20 years I’ve carried a burden from long-ago and I like the idea of letting it go – no longer being defined as a survivor or victim of sexual abuse and all that such a label entails.

Fast forward to later today…

I was looking back, to 5 years ago, and feeling the urge to analyze and explore what occurred with a therapist who tried EFT (energy field therapy). I found myself driving by her office and I remembered some of her techniques. I don’t remember all of it, by any means, but I know my journals tell the whole story. I was drawn to the idea of reliving what I went through. I had a fleeting thought that if I burn those journals I can’t go back to that particular time and figure out what went wrong. The therapist believed in energy fields and trusted my body to tell her what I was ready for and what I needed. She unknowingly had me relive an early trauma and the questions she asked as I was under her “spell” didn’t rescue me…I felt hurt and victimized because my emotional pain was not understood. After a few months the therapeutic relationship backfired and I left her practice. The experience was PTSD all over again. That’s scary shit when I’m re-traumatized by my past and have no sense of control.

Why do I want to hold on to that? I know what happened and I should be able to let it go… What I learned was I can not expose such deep feelings again…

I wonder why I hold onto my past. So strange that I feel I must repeat it, at least on an intellectual level, in order to move on.

I’m toying with the idea of just letting it all go. Burning everything. That is causing me apprehension because my past defines me.

This post was initially going to address how powerful I feel and how I am so ready to burn my bridges and let the past go. But, driving by my previous therapist’s office caused an aching for my past and what I didn’t heal or fix the first time.

I guess I need some time to digest the idea of burning my bridges… ♥ ♥ ♥

6 responses to “Let the past go

  1. Once, I wanted to burn all my journals. At the time, I was about 17, and my dad had a friend over that I had never met. He had feathers in his hat. He was some sort of traveler, which was not ordinary for my household. He told me that I should save those journals and not burn them at all. I listened, for some reason, and right now, at 29, I am incredibly glad that I did. Since, then, I have gone through those journals and ripped out and burned certain pages, but only after really reading them and choosing to do so. On other pages, I found treasures and things that I am incredibly grateful to have. I don’t know what the best thing for you to do is; all I know is that some things are really good to do once you digest the notion…which you are doing, so yeah. Good call, I think 🙂

  2. Sorry I suggested literally burning your journals. Definitely, this decision needs time and has to be your own.
    I understand how those journals are part of your identity but I also know that when I burned some of my own (all of the suffering ones) I felt the most wonderful sense of release.

    • Don’t apologize — the suggestion came at just the right time and I appreciated it. I want to burn my journals and let go of the misery and pain that I’m holding onto. I tend to analyze and process everything before I jump right in but I’m preparing myself for a small campfire in the back yard! I think the process would force me to be more forward thinking which would be a good thing.

  3. Past writings can show how far you’ve come, I think. Also, I just in general don’t like to throw away things in case I want them one day. Not to relive matters . . . but to understand the totality by reminding myself of the parts.

    • I have always felt like you but a recent trip to help my mother move showed me that my past writings are really not meant for others to see — ever. My mom saves everything, like a wonderfully old scrapbook of my grandfather’s and my great grandmother’s wedding dress. That’s the stuff worth passing on.

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