Just as the seasons change, your past is not your present.
As humans, it seems change doesn’t happen as naturally for us, as it does for the seasons. So what’s the difference?
We humans always have a choice, and often times we choose to live in our past, rather than fully living in the present, in the now ~body, mind, and spirit integrated in the same place at the same time.
Trust me, I know how hard it is to let go of broken dreams. I’ve struggled to surrender many of my heartaches to God.
The sudden tragic loss of my father when I was a teen. My divorce and the loss of my dream in life to grow old with my first love.
I struggled to let go, to move on, to accept that I couldn’t fix this broken dream just like I couldn’t fix the dream of having my father heal and stay alive. I so badly wanted my dad with me to celebrate my graduations, my wedding, the births of my children. It has been so hard to let go, to let myself surrender these broken dreams to God.
I feel deeply and it’s okay to grieve loss for as long as we need, but for me I realized my chronic grief was hurting me more than it was helping me heal. I became stuck. I stopped living. My body was present, but my mind lived in the past trying to analyze, overthink, and find a way to fix unfixable problems.
Two lessons I’ve learned the hard way…
1) Praying someone to stay alive doesn’t always work, no matter how great your faith. Our time is not always God’s time. Our will is not always God’s will.
2) I can’t “do the work” for another to heal their past trauma, as much as I desperately want. I can’t change anyone except myself.
I have tried to do things my own way, to do the work for others, to fix others because I could not fix my dad.
I have lived the past over and over expecting a different solution. And that, my friend, is the very definition of insanity, and why letting go of the past and surrendering our will to God is so important.
Through many years of hard life experiences, trauma counseling, and doing the healing work for myself, I have learned that change requires the same from all who want to step out of brokenness, from all who want to let go of the broken dreams of the past, from all who want to step into being your greatest empowered healthy self, the person you were always called to be.
The good news is that change is always possible. As a good therapist told me over and over, I always have choices and options!
When we find the motivation to change, it begins with a single shift in our mindset, followed by a choice, then lots of small steps, and for sure we need to celebrate all the little victories and even the failures. It is all just feedback and a learning process about ourselves, the goal being to peel the layers until we reach the core of who we truly are at the deepest level.
The most important thing I’ve learned about transformation is that we get there the fastest by slowing down, speaking our truths, and becoming our authentic selves as best we can.
Some words by recovery expert Melody Beattie have been balm to my weary, grieving soul over the last few years.
“Let go of all expectations.
Cut the strings of resentment and negativity that connect you to another.
Detach from bitterness and forgive.
Make room for love and positivity.
The universe will do what it will.
Sometimes your dream will come true,
sometimes they won’t.
Sometimes when you let go of a broken dream, another one gently takes its place“
It can be hard to let go of broken dreams, to let go of the past and love fully alive in the present moment, but it is possible!!!
With the help of my higher power I am doing so, and I believe you can too.
We decide if we let the past continue to be our present, like the perpetual Groundhog Day movie.
Or, we decide if we choose to allow each new day be a fresh start to do something different, for us to be someone healthier than we were the day before.
Change is always possible!!
And I believe you are worth it!
With hope and confidence,
Ruth Renee, RN
Student Nurse Coach
Are there any broken dreams you are struggling to let go? What have you learned because of the struggle?
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