“Oh What we could be if we stopped carrying the remains of who we were.”~Tyler Knott Gregson
Most of us like parts of us, and there are parts that we wish were different. Perhaps there are situations we wish were different, or parts of our personality, patterns of behavior that we wish were different. Many of us categorize those parts as, “that’s just who I am” or “I’ve been that way a long time, I’m not changing now” or the very old well-used “leopards do not change their spots.” And we continue just moving through life in the same way, without growth, without learning, without changing.
Some of those patterns of behavior hurt others, some hurt ourselves, some cause us to question our worth, some cause us to rehash the same crap over and over again. The same frustrations, and the same reactions, just keeping coming up. We tend to look at others and think they are causing it and bringing it out in us and many times place blame. And we continue to be the way we were instead of who we are becoming, who we want to become or who we now know we are.
As we grow, and begin to understand those patterns and how they were formed, we may begin to deconstruct them. We may begin to learn a new pattern. We may realize that we can be an even better version of ourselves by no longer carrying those remains. Much of this is traced back to childhood. This isn’t meant to blame anyone, especially parents. Parents do the best they can with the information they have. These patterns may have been created by siblings, by friendships, by other kids in our life, by other adults in our life, or situations we were dealt at a young age just as easily as they are created by our parents.
The times that shaped us, the people who impacted us, did so both from a place of love and from a place of fear. As their fears were pushed on us, we may have created patterns based on those fears. My mom was extremely focused on me being a strong independent woman. So much so that at the age of 10, she bought a check book from a stationary store, spending time with me each month with fake money and fake bills. She wanted me to be able to handle myself financially without having to depend on a man or anyone else. Her fear was that I would be dependent on a man, which I think was how she felt. Even though she was a woman ahead of her time to a degree, she was also dependent on my father for the income for the family. She didn’t want that for me. Her focus was for me to not need anyone.
She was quite successful, I have never been dependent on anyone for anything. This has had repercussions throughout my life. At work, I had trouble ever saying that I needed help, so I worked too many hours and slaved at a lot of things that could have been easier. It took me until toward the end of my corporate career to begin to ask others for help. At home, both of my ex-husbands said they married me partially because of my fierce independence and then threw that independence right back in my face. I heard things like, “she needs me, you don’t. I know you will be fine.” They never really understood the girl inside the woman who needed to be held, to be pampered and taken care of a bit. Asking for help, leaning on others, has never come easy. But when I was forced to stop being a card-carrying independent woman and forced to rely on others, I found that others came through. I was better for it as well. It felt good to be taken care of, it allowed me to feel loved, something I had not felt much over the last few years. It showed me the power of the people around me. It changed the pattern so that I now could ask for help; the remains of that fiercely independent woman were no longer carried as a badge of honor. Yes, I’m still independent, but I’m different. I now can ask for help, I’m willing to compromise and see things differently. I am a better version of me by letting those remains go.
Some of us carry wounds around without even realizing how they impact us. If we were to heal them or let them go, we would be a better version of ourselves. We would perhaps have a broader and different perspective. We may have more joy in our lives. We may have more fun in our lives. These wounds can cause us to lash out, to isolate ourselves, to hold on tighter than we need to, perhaps controlling less and letting more flow. As Abraham-Hicks says, “there is a stream of well-being that flows, we can allow it or resist it, it flows just the same.” This statement has made me consider how I resist the flow of well-being. Certainly by always trying to control the outcome and how I’m going to get there, I may actually resist the stream of well-being. My way may not be the best way. That outcome may not be the best for me. I tried to control an outcome over the past few years that I had no right trying to control. In doing so, I got hurt. In letting that go, in letting that control go and mostly in letting go of the expectations of the outcome I wanted, I am able to now be more open to other outcomes. I am more focused on me being my best self filled with love. I am open instead of closed off.
We can all be even better versions of ourselves when we stop carrying around the pieces of ourselves that are filled with wounds. If we all learn from our patterns and work to change them, oh what we can be!