As part of the Parent to Parent Support course I have been doing, the first day was an introductory day. It was all about awareness. Awareness of ourselves and most importantly, if we are going to be a support network, awareness of others.
“Forgive others, more so yourself.”
My eyes were opened. Big time.
And like every new discovery, every new challenge, one that went on for 8 hours, I was exhausted when I got home. I tried to read over my course notes and complete my evaluation form but there was nothing there. My mind drew a complete blank. I had no idea how to answer the questions asked of me.
So I went to bed.
When I woke up the following morning, I had my answers. All of them clear, concise and honest.
I learned a lot that first day. I learned a lot from the other people on the course. And I learned some things about myself.
The exercises put to us were designed to draw us out. To make us think. Think outside the box. To be introspective.
To remember what it is like to be that first time mother of a “shiny new baby, with whom you are passionately in love” and not the jaded mother of today, gasping for a cup of tea and ten minutes to herself.
“Understand that everything you meet in your path will teach you something about life; what you can become and what you will not allow”
It was an exercise encouraging us to be mindful of how someone else who has not yet travelled the length of the parenthood road, someone who is still at the starting block, is possibly feeling.
A lot of memories were raked up for some people that day. Some of them not so good. Not so warm and fuzzy.
My own were called to mind.
They pop up every now and again. Like the little festering thoughts that they are. I questioned why I hang onto these. Why can’t I just cut them free and let them go? I am a much different person today. Older and wiser and not so quick to be hurt and even slower to dwell.
But I had my answer.
I’m not done with those festering thoughts yet.
I am not hanging onto them as a primitive scoring system, nor are they in my head rent free.
They are still there because I am not ready to let go of them. They still affect me. They still piss me off.
I am still learning from them.
I think this is ok. It’s human, it’s natural and it’s a defence mechanism.
“Carry with you the lessons of the past but not its crippling pain.”
That is hard to do but I’m trying.