Forgiveness

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Forgiveness came to me by surprise and when I least expected it. I believe that sitting with and working through the old grief that I had been clutching to, allowed the space within my heart for forgiveness.

Many years ago, my grandfather had phoned me up and expressed his angry opinion to me on how he thought I should handle the abuse I experienced. His words hurt me deeply and I felt betrayed,  unsupported and like somehow it was all my fault. It felt like I had been punched in the stomach and my relationship with him changed that day. I could not forgive him until recently after he had passed away. Something in me softened and I realized that this anger I was carrying around with me was only affecting me. What point was it to continue to be angry at him? I felt a sadness arise for all the years I missed out on getting to know him.

On the way to the funeral I listened to The Book of Forgiveness by Desman Tutu and Mpho Tutu for the whole 6 hour drive there. I had made the choice to forgive my grandpa and my heart felt more at peace and my love for him grew. I also knew that the man who abused me would be at the funeral, and what I did not expect or anticipate was the miraculous healing that incurred for me that day.

I walked in and he was the first person I saw. There he was standing before me and I could not avoid his presence. But this time, something was different. I no longer saw a monster looming over me, I saw a human being and man who was also holding pain and suffering.  A strength rose up in me along with a shocking decision I made, that it was time to forgive him. Never ever did I believe it would be possible to forgive this man who I hated, and wished pain and torment upon everyday of his life like I endured. But, I forgave him, for myself, to free myself from the suffering and resentment I was carrying around with me. I could see how it affected my life and that was not ok with me anymore. I was ready to let the story go.

From The Book of Forgiveness…

“What Forgiveness is not”

  • forgiveness is not easy-it requires hard work and a consistent willingness.
  • forgiveness is not weakness-it requires courage and strength.
  • forgiveness does not subvert justice-it creates space for justice to be enacted with a purity of purpose that does not include revenge.
  • forgiveness is not forgetting-it requires a fearless remembering of hurt.
  • forgiveness is not quick-it can take several journeys through the cycles of remembering and grief before one can truly forgive and be free.

And now to release all aspects of the abuse and free the pain and suffering that was hunkered deep down inside me, I turn to forgiveness for myself. I intentionally and unintentionally inflicted abuse, neglect, criticism, and suffering upon myself. I did not believe I was good enough, worthy or loveable and I hated myself. I forgive myself for these false perceptions and behaviours. It has been holding me back in trusting myself, living life and experiencing more joy!

Someone recently shared with me on what forgiveness meant to him and it resonates deeply with me now. He said “forgiveness is forgiving without forgetting” and “forgiveness was the path to his heart where he lived.”

What does forgiveness mean to me…

FORGIVENESS IS THE PATH TO MY HEART WHERE LYNNDEL LIVES.

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Putting Myself First

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Saying goodbye to honor me,

Starting fresh

Stepping into my Truth with power and softness.

Silently at first I walk,

my head held high

confident.

My wings outstretched and glistening

rediscovering their freedom.

A sensation stirs in my womb

aching to dance.

Re-birthed with compassion

and alive through passion

A ferocious gentleness emerges.

In this silky radiance love bursts forth

I begin to open again and prepare to celebrate my victory,

recognizing my worth,

empowering myself….

AND THEN…

A stabbing pain plunges through my heart

The victim sulking inside rises up with brute force

screaming relentlessly in sorrow

Why did you do this to us?

Why did you take away our happiness?

I rocked the boat and the anchor of grief tied to my heart,

began to sink me  into the depths of a dark sea of victim mentality.

Poor me, all alone

blaming this and that,

everyone and everything else,

Taking no responsibility

I CAN’T DO THIS AGAIN.

This power sucking, energy draining, narrow perception.

The voices continue to scream in breath crushing sobs

What is wrong with me?

Rejected again – not good enough – want to die – no reason for my existence.

A tug of war between my truth,

and this ego driven worthless attitude.

I recognize this pattern, I STOP.

Reasoning with this part of me and arguing with her does not work.

I  did NOT want to admit that she still existed with all the healing I have done,

and yet here she was.

A little girl standing before me

questioning why it took so long for me to recognize that she mattered?

I softened,

feeling more space open around me

listening without judgement,

I witnessed her,

I gathered all our pain and allowed it to wash through me.

Then rooted in my strength

with compassion,

I open again into loving myself unconditionally

Celebrating the victory I have come to embody

My existence matters,

I MATTER!

~Lynndel~

 

 

 

 

Forgiving Myself has freed another chain holding me down!

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Forgiveness, so what does this really mean? I knew the importance of forgiving myself for deeper healing to occur, and yet I danced around completely feeling into it. I knew that I still blamed myself for what had happened to me, and I found it easier to forgive others for hurting me, than it was for me to forgive myself. I just wasn’t quite sure on how to really forgive myself, and so I just continued to sit with this question until clarity came. I now realize that I held a deep buried ancient belief that I needed to sacrifice myself to keep the peace, and so I kept silent and allowed the abuse to continue, not just to me but others as well.
Forgiving myself was a process that I did little by little, day by day. I began to treat myself better, I ate better, changed the critical damaging thoughts that I continuously had running in my mind. I chose people, things, and places that were nourishing and nurturing to me. I made one choice after another that supported me in loving myself.
Then one day a deep body felt wave of sensation, of recognition, that I had punished myself long enough and that I could now forgive myself washed through me. I was not to blame, I was not responsible for the actions of others. I did everything that I could at the time with the resources that I had. An understanding then emerged that I was Alive, and that I was now free to live! IT WAS OK TO LIVE NOW! The voice of my soul pleaded out for me to hear and the recognition resonated in every cell of my body when I became quiet enough, and ready to listen. This message came to me through an interpretation of a dream that I had. How powerful our dreams can be as part of our healing and guidance!
The other part of the struggle to forgive myself, was a belief that in order to forgive, you needed to forget and just move on. I could never forget, so how could I forgive? I have a deeper sense of what forgiveness means now. A definition I recently heard from Wayne Dyer helped put things into more perspective…. Non-Judgement, Non Criticism, Non Condemnation = Forgiveness.
Further writings that I have come across also helped settle this belief I held. It says…”Forgiveness does not mean forgetting, nor does it mean condoning or excusing offenses. Forgiveness empowers you to recognize the pain you suffered without letting that pain define you.”
A quote from Fred Luskin states “At the most basic level, forgiveness is on a continuum with grief. When you’re hurt, or violated, the natural response is to grief. Forgiveness is the resolution of grief.”
Forgiveness is the resolution of grief! To sit with this knowing and feel the weight that has lifted off me as I no longer sit in the puddle of this trauma, is indescribable! Every time I think that I have found such a blissful state of stillness, I sink deeper into another pocket of it.
Forgiving myself has freed another chain holding me down!

INTEGRATING THE NEWNESS OF CHANGE

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Lately I have found myself feeling a bit speechless. The words have not been coming to me and my writing has stopped. Over the last few years the words, feelings, and tears have spilled out onto the pages. They  brought me much healing, understanding, encouragement, and strength. I have opened, grown and found the support within myself from them to make the changes I needed in my life. These words have soaked through my skin and settled into my bones. They have reminded me of who I am, motivating and encouraging me to keep my eyes up and moving towards that which nourishes me.

Recently, I have needed to go through a period of integrating and soothing as I journey through this experience of change and transformation. I have felt a great sense of loss and grief as I let go of the familiarity, comfort, and security of the things, people, and identity of who I believed myself to be. I also hold excitement of the freedom as I learn and witness that I am enough, and that what I have been searching for has been within me all along. I am my support, unconditional love, comfort and strength. Acceptance of who I am brings me into stillness. My thoughts, beliefs, perceptions create my life. I CREATE MY LIFE!! So now I sit with the questions of what do I want, where do I want to go and how can I support others on their journey?

I also experience the feeling of guilt over the excitement I feel to be moving on with my life.  There is a part of me that believed that this was not an acceptable response and that happiness is not allowed.That critical, self-sabotaging ego that was battering me!! I have also become aware of that small child part that believed she was responsible for holding others pain. I acknowledge all of these emotions, holding them all together and allowing each their expression. I allow their energy to rise up within me and wash back out like a gentle wave. I feel the fluidity and strive to sway like seaweed while connecting, rooting into the earth, and opening to the energy and support of the heavens above.

I breathe, I move, I write, and I make conscious choices to things which will nourish and support me. I remind myself to rest back, to feel into the ease, to move through my experiences from that place of stillness within me where all my answers, support, and knowing lie. That place where the essence of who I am radiates out from. From here, experiences I encounter and the emotions that arise do not become overwhelming. I can see more clearly, my perceptions do not get skewed, and I learn to not take things personally. This has been very freeing and healing for me. I remind myself constantly and consistently to make these choices. Day by day, moment to moment, one by one, I change these old patterns and beliefs.

I ground and fill, keeping myself in an energy rich state and so therefore I am stable, my strength unwavering.

Liberating Blame

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Blame
Blaming myself
Blaming you.
Angry… spiteful
This poison flowing through my veins.
Feeling helpless
Too weak,
Too small to fight back.
Taking accountability for allowing the abuse to continue.
Believing I deserved it.
Not speaking up.
Believing I had no control.
Blaming myself for the actions of others,
This is not mine to own.
I now have let it go,
The blame.
I do not need to keep punishing myself.
I see now,
It was not my fault!
This truth soaks into my skin
IT IS NOT MY FAULT.
Releasing blame!
LIBERATING

Reclaiming My Power

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Powerlessness…. Another layer of this feeling has shown up for me to work through these last couple of weeks as new experiences arise in my life. This feeling stems back from the abuse and has been intertwined in my life. This feeling that I had as a small child as being completely physically powerless to fight back against something that was being forced upon me. Having no voice to speak up against it, and the emotional immaturity to comprehend what was taking place. I felt utterly helpless in having any control over the experiences occurring in my life.
Although this may have been true as a child, in my life today I know that am in control and that I have the power, but subconsciously this powerless part was dictating my mood and my actions. This belief that had formed from my experience was deeply embedded into every cell of my body and holding me in a victim mentality. I have been carrying it forward with me and I have been looking out into the world at my current situation through this belief and child like eyes. I was feeling like everything was being taken away from me and I was powerless to do anything about it.
I have learned that stomping my feet in anger, closing my eyes and ears, and locking down my body in a rigid, defiant, defensive stance were keeping me powerless!! This was an old pattern to the fear of not knowing what was coming and the perception of something being “done to me” that I did not like. This was the only way I knew how to fight against it, but it has been closing me off to the people and things that would move me in a direction of a more nurturing and healing outcome.
I may not like what I am going through now, but I have the power to choose how I deal with it and my reactions to what is said and done. Changes are occurring for me and I could take that stance of feeling powerless against it, or I can choose to rise up once again with grace and choose to be flexible with the change. These waves of grief and loss bump up against me and flow through me, as it is all energy moving and I am learning to allow this to just occur.
I choose not to take things so personally and attach them to defining who I am. Once again I take my power back, as I understand that I never lost it to begin with. It was my perception that I had. NO one can take it away from me unless I allow them to. At the time when I was a small child I may not have been able to fight back and was powerless in that situation, but those circumstances did not take my power away. It was always there, but the fear and the lies I was told as I was being hurt made me believe that he was now in control of my life, and I could do nothing about it.
I am in control and I have the power to change my life, but this concept has not been just this simple for me to grasp. It has been conscious choices made one at a time, one step at a time, and one day at a time. I have heard these words and even consciously believed them, but it took time to really feel what they meant. Coming into stillness, listening, and allowing opening to occur, has enabled this truth to reverberate into my cells and the knowing to rebirth my strength.
I love the purity and power that I feel when I can rest back into myself, and feel the strength in who I am and what I can do.

My Vulnerability

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power vulnerabilityToday my thoughts are on vulnerability. Have I opened myself up too much to the world? Have I shared too much? What would I say if someone approached me in the street and wanted to know about the abuse?  But then I was reminded, that it is in sharing with each other that we help each other heal.
Vulnerability is defined in the dictionary as being “without adequate protection, extremely susceptible, physically or psychologically weak, and open to attack”. Interesting how my perception and what vulnerability means to me have changed! I used to be so afraid of opening up and sharing anything in fear of blame and judgment. I believed holding on to the secrets was the only thing keeping me safe and protected, but living in this fear and with the shame crippled me. Holding on to this secret is what made me vulnerable, weak. I spent so much energy in defense, trying to hide myself and the battle going on within me.
I have found strength in opening up and sharing my experience and the feelings I had about it. It has taken the power away from that intense fear I had of being seen, heard, the acknowledgment of my existence in this world and the place I have in it. I believed that if I told about the horrible things that were done to me that I was going to fall apart and die. I thought people would look down upon me and that child within me believed I would be banished to hell. The relief that came when telling my story to a group of women, who held the support and healing space for me to do so, shocked me. My ability to open into and face my vulnerability enabled strength and courage to rise up within me. It empowered me.
Do I feel vulnerable opening myself up like this, yes. Does it now make me fearful and weak, no. The vulnerability in sharing is liberating to me right now. I can take a deep breath and life and movement have emerged, like a lotus flower rising up out of the murky waters. I have opened and am sharing who I am, and it is freeing. I am seen and heard in my truth. I have been witnessed and believed. I do not have to hide and pretend this experience didn’t happen to me. I can speak about how it affected my life and in doing so help others find their own voice.
Working through the pain and tears I am able to come to a place in which I can open my perceptual lens wide enough to realize that the experience that happened to me was just that. It was something that happened to me and it does not define who I am. I am not ashamed or disgusted with who I am anymore because of what happened to me.
I can now bump up against the edges of my vulnerability because I am accepting of who I am. What a journey to get here, but I have discovered much depth and honesty with myself in the process. Opening up to the world has given me growth.