Are our lives a straight line of events that occur one after another until we run out of life events?
Or, rather, are our lives a series of cycles by which different issues and events pop up, resolve and then pop up once more in a slightly different form?
As I work through a life issue, I like to think that I eventually figure out what to do and that is the end of it.
But life has a way of reminding us from time to time that the past is prologue, that things that caused us pain or concern have a way of recurring.
Stated more directly, when we overcome a problem, we want that to be the end of it.
To not have to worry about that any more.
But life doesn’t seem to be working out that way.
A small example: I wanted to give up consuming large amounts of Diet Pepsi. I cut back on DP for many weeks. I went from drinking probably 7-8 cans worth of soda a day to 1.
I thought that my dependence on soda and caffeine had diminished and was on its way to subsiding. But I eventually eased back into drinking more and more diet soda each day.
How did that happen? What did I miss?
A bigger example: let’s say there is a childhood trauma that we have been dealing with for years.
We talked about it.
We thought about it.
We prayed about it.
We let go of it.
Or so we thought.
Different triggers still remind us of the event. The strangest things can take us right back to the trauma.
Just like that – back to the past, back to the pain.
Seems like memory works like that. Trauma cuts deep.
We can be upset or sad that these memories flare up from time to time.
Or we can accept the trauma as part of our past. Recognize it, accept it and understand it is just a part of us.
Tough to do, but so freaking helpful.
So that we are free to be present. And present to be free.