There are countless books that line book stores that give tips and strategies to heal the wounds of our childhood. Therapist’s offices flourish over the family of origin issues that bring clients in week after week. For some, there are years spent dealing with the painful memories that crop up in our adulthood. It seems that this happens when we begin to have families of our own or our relationships begin to suffer as a result some deeply seeded emotions that are usually lying dormant until the ripe time to emerge.
Of course, we all have a wound or two no matter how ideal our growing up years were. To think or assume that we are immune to it is a set-up for emotional soreness. No parent is perfect and it is in our own recognition of our mistakes or areas to grow we can being to unpeel the harmful thoughts that infiltrate our present life.
For me, I have read the books. I have gone to therapy. I have done the soul work. I have written the unsent letters. I have forgiven. I have set boundaries.
And yet, there are times when the painful feelings of separation and being unseen bubbles up from deep within to catapult me into a present day question of my worthiness. In these moments I wonder and ask myself if a parent or sibling refuses to be part of my life or love me, how can anyone find me to be worthy?
I find that when these seeds emerge again, I spend time in the place of questioning and in sadness. But in truth I am wasting time. Would I really want someone in my life who places so much judgement on another human being? Would I really want the strings-attached conditional love that comes from a place of animosity for others? Would I really walk into that to risk being shamed?
I think not.
Instead, I recognize who they are. I know that when I get to the place where I am spiraling into thoughts that are laced with anger, rage and even retaliation, I know that I must stop and do my own work.
So I practice compassion. For myself first and foremost and I see that I am worthy and I am good. I then practice compassion for them. True Metta (loving kindness). I see them as the young and wounded little boys and realize that their action are a result of their own stuff and what they are feeling is the sharp stabs of their emotional bruises. They are likely unable to feel them in a way that can heal them, so they discharge the pain onto others.
I get it. I understand it because I have been there.
Today and hopefully tomorrow, I am choosing compassion rather than pain. I know my worth and I know questioning it is time spent wasted.