While so many are focused on the new and what is coming, I'm going to take for my model the Roman god Janus. Straddling the calendar's shift, today is a time for looking back.
A few years ago, I was invited to a Solstice ceremony. Everyone was asked to bring a piece of paper and to write down all those things that we wished to leave behind us in the dark. These papers were then burned to create the new light of things to come. So today I'm considering what needs to be left behind.
First, and foremost, is fear in all it's aspects. I am determined not to carry with me fear of financial disaster. It may very well hitch-hike along for the ride or pop up like a jack-in-the-box, but I'm not wrapping my arms around it or claiming it for my own. We are almost all in the very same leaky boat on that score so it is useless to worry about it. Whatever will come, will come and there is no use angst-ing about it in the meanwhile.
I'm also all done with the fear of rejection. Most of my life I've held myself back, generally assuming that my presence was not welcomed. This was based on nothing more than a lack of self-esteem as many people seem more than happy to have me around. Granted not everyone, but that is always going to be the case for everyone. And, only by risking the rejection do I open myself up to opportunity for acceptance. I figure a 50/50 split is probably do-able.
And the fear that makes its appearance through lack of trust has also got to go. I don't plan on being reckless by any means, but I do plan to allow folks to show me just how wonderful they are. If they don't, well they don't, but I'm thinking most of the people one comes across are worth the effort. And, if they aren't, they don't get the second shot at me.
I'm going to leave behind pain, as well. I don't think I get the option with physical pain, although if someone would like to cart off my migraines and bury them, I wouldn't object. I mean the emotional pain that clouds new joys. Like everyone, I've had my share, but it is not going to go forward into 2009 with me.
Resentment also has to go. I'd already taken steps to eliminate the most egregious causes of resentment, so it's just the niggly little things that require digging up at this point. But it is time to get out the trowel and dispose of them as well. I'll probably also give the heave-ho to the nasty little pet names that I have given to those resentment causers.
That seems like a lot. However, given that they are all rather heavy and no utter use to me, I expect that it will be a relief not to lug them around any longer. And, when one is tightly clutching things in one's hands, it makes it impossible to open those hands to receive new gifts. So, prior to lifting a glass to welcome in the new, these things need to be tossed over my shoulder first, without a backward glance.
Teacher Voices: Stewart Matthews - Here's another post in my continuing series on teacher voices. I'm interviewing some of my former students who have gone on to become teachers. In this po...
5 days ago