“You may never know what results come of your action, but if you do nothing there will be no result.” – Mahatma Ghandi
Things happen that continually shape our way of thinking and perception of our world. Whatever it may be has a direct impact on our opinions and the way we decide to carry ourselves through.
I remember the day I lost my best friend – he passed away after a week in the intensive unit at the hospital from a car crash. That day shaped the next 11 years of my life. His death seemed unfair – he was bright, good and had so much going for him. The good kid, the sweet one. I went to the hospital every single day for that week, wishing he’d pull through. That never happened.
After that day, my life went on. I went on to make mistakes, laugh and play. I completed my studies, went on to a few jobs and had the drive to make myself a success but he was always on my mind. Every time I would have a “bad” day I’d resort to his passing to amplify my feelings and make me feel even worse. I’ve never been one to reach for a Ben & Jerry’s but rather a big bag of chips, I felt comfort in feeling sad and my food choice helped with that feeling. Even when things were going amazing for me I had a sense in the back of my head that it would all come to an end. The higher I was the harder I’d fall, right?
My perception had gotten shattered and I didn’t want to do anything about it. The experience found it’s way into my love life – in a past relationship I’d continuously be coming up with excuses of why not to fully open up and allow myself to be vulnerable because I knew in my core I’d end up getting hurt if I was too exposed. I simply couldn’t open up. This relationship lasted well over 4 years and now, having gone through it, I realize the poor guy didn’t have chance. If anything went wrong I’d hide out in my cave with extremely sad music and the thought of my friend not being there. I believed my best friend was the guy I was meant to be with but I had realized it too late, I had lost my chance. This had gone on for so long, I didn’t know anything different anymore so I couldn’t move forward. My comfort level was set.
It wasn’t until I made the choice to end the roller coaster ride that I started to notice a change. I consciously made an effort to ban any sad music on a crappy day, I’d blast out fun tunes and get myself to another mental state before I recapped my day and thought things through. My bag of chips was not part of the equation anymore, I’d have my treat but at another time. I made the decision that I wouldn’t feed into the feeling. My “back of my head” thoughts would not be a manifestation of would happen. A simple step, a shift, sure made an impact and after so long of remembering my friend I then, finally, decided it was time to work things through.
The opportunity of working through my grieving had been there all along but I thought that by working on it I’d be releasing his memory and I’d eventually forget him with time, I didn’t want that to happen but that wasn’t really the case. That day of working through it, I remembered him and cried, the hardest I’ve ever cried for him before. I said what I never had a chance of saying. I broke down and eventually got myself back up. I managed to untie the massive knot that had prevented me from moving forward, I gave my mind a chance to flow. After that moment, I released.
Our mind is comprised of patterns and road blocks, when we experience an event it creates an impact, a stamp if you will. That stamp, with time, becomes our habit. We find ourselves moving toward a state of being stuck where activities and even food choices help increase it’s effectiveness, or ineffectiveness if you think about it. Unless we make the choice to interrupt the cycle can we release but it has to be us, not our friends or family pushing us to it.
If I had put myself through working on this knot a few years ago, I wouldn’t have been ready. My family was worried, they knew it wasn’t healthy and I was sabotaging any potential relationship I could have but I knew I had to go through the motions on my own, well, I didn’t know I just wasn’t ready. It wasn’t until I chose to accept my “luck” as my own, my life and myself when I made that decision, that conscious effort, that I broke free from my sabotaging ways and I now remember him without suffering.
One last thing: my best friend in this story could easily be a friend of yours – a pet, a job, your weight… anything that you’ve been carrying for years that has had an impact on your life, an impact that has prevented you from moving forward.
What have you had to release in your life in order to move forward?