The Past is the Past is the Past is the Past

photo-8

The past is the past. Those were my first thoughts when I woke up this morning. Well, that and the fact that my dogs were more comfortable in my bed than I was because they had more room and more pillows than me. Oh, the sacrifices we make for our fur babies!

I laid in bed for a few minutes and my mind drifted back to my first thought. I was a bit irritated because I already know that the past is the past. A piece of my blog yesterday was dedicated to just that. So, why was I fixated on this statement?

“Okay, God. I need a download here.” And so it began.

Today is day eighteen of my sobriety and one of my focuses has been allowing myself to really “live” life in the here and now, without beating myself up for past mistakes. And believe me, there are a lot of them. Though I am a work in progress, I am allowing God to show me the difference between conviction and condemnation. God convicts, or gently corrects, satan condemns. Slowly, but surely, I am understanding and happily accepting this. You should, too. It’s freeing and there have been several times where I have stopped in my tracks when the condemnation tried to saturate my entire being.

“No, no, no.” I said it out loud and it shifted my entire mindset.

Whatever I did, did is past tense, it is done. I will not relive it. I will not take another beating over it. I will not let it muddy up today’s clear waters. It’s over, it’s done, I learned from it, took what I needed from it and now I am moving on. Perfect.

There it is Lord. I think I’ve got a fairly decent handle on the “past is the past” lesson. Of course, like any life lesson, review sessions are necessary and I will participate fully when these opportunities present themselves.  As a recap, whenever the the ugly deeds I did in the past try to rear their dead, ugly heads, I will dust my feet and move on.

Perfect. Ummm…not so fast. Thankfully, our pasts are not solely made up of ugly, dastardly mistakes and deeds. Our pasts are a culmination of everything that has happened in our lives. At this point, I needed to digest what God was sharing with me. I got up, made coffee, pulled out my laptop and began taking notes.

“Quit hanging on to the past. Let it go…all of it.”

Wait, all of it? The good stuff, too? But, I like thinking about and reminiscing about the good stuff. How often do I replay, fantasize, dream, recreate, or pine over the awesome past events of my life? Crap! If I combined the time that I spent reliving the negative events as well as the positive events of my past, when in the heck was I actually living and enjoying the present moment?

Revelation. I have been spending entirely too much time in my past. It’s like I’ve been going through the motions of life, but haven’t really been living in the here and now. I mean, how could I if I was spending my time beating myself up over my drinking addiction and then pining over how good I looked in jeans that now won’t go past my thighs?

And there was my “aha!” moment. Look, there is absolutely nothing in our past that we can change. We cannot got back and erase the bad and we cannot go back and relive the good. We are different now and if we are not allowing ourselves to be present in the here and now, we will never realize who we are supposed to be today.

We are made to evolve and grow and we no longer need what the past had to offer. Our lives are here, right now, today. Even better, the greatest moments are yet to come because God says so. He says that our latter days will be better than our former days. That means, my friends, that the best times have not yet occurred, but they are coming. They are set to occur in the here and now and in the tomorrows, but we cannot experience them if we are living in the yesterdays of life.

Carpe diem! We must seize the day before it too, becomes the past and we miss out on what it had to offer. It might sound nutty, but it is never too late to live a happily ever after, God-type of life. And in order to do so, we must be present in every moment.

New Year’s Eve 2014 was the first one that I spent sober in many, many years. I experienced every moment of the 1920’s murder mystery dinner party. I breathed it all in and I enjoyed myself. I’m telling ya, Diet Pepsi never tasted so good. And even better, January 1st never felt so good! My point is, I didn’t allow the goods or the bads of my past to cloud the present. I’m new to this way of thinking, so I had to keep reminding myself to enjoy the moment. I am sure that after a time, this will just become the natural way I live my life. It felt great to be sober in mind and heart and enjoy all that those moments had to offer.

I’m not saying that we shouldn’t to cherish our memories and learn from our mistakes. But, let us stop fixating on them and allow ourselves to really experience life in the here and now. After all, that’s where our true joy can be found.

Blessing and hugs to you all. 🙂

Advertisements
Standard

Trading My Sorrows (once & for all)…

IMG_1984

This Christmas vacation has been the best one I’ve had in years. For the past couple of years and for numerous reasons, I just was not in the Christmas spirit. It seemed that no matter how many pep talks I gave myself, or how many to-do lists I drafted, I just couldn’t bring myself to go gung-ho, ho, ho into the Christmas season. Much to the dismay of my family, we were lucky if I got the tree up the week before Christmas. Decorating the house was a chore and in all honesty, probably would not have gotten done had it not been for my children. I know, not fair right? Still, though I knew this, I just wasn’t in the mood, so to speak.

I would be lying if I said that my kids went without materialistically where Christmas was concerned. “Santa” was always abundantly generous with all four of them. That was never the issue. The problem was that with each passing Christmas, I became emotionally unattached and vacant. I seemed to always get sucked into a pit party for myself when it came to thinking about family during the holidays and I let the absence of my own parents handicap what I had always hoped to create for my own. Let me be clear, my parents are not dead, they simply have chosen not to be a part of my life and by osmosis, the lives of my children. This is certainly a subject we will touch on in later blog entries, but for now that’s all I will mention.

Though I have always loved the Lord, I have always had a problem with allowing Him to love me unconditionally. If my own father was unable to to this, why would my Heavenly Father want to? So ruled by this mentality, I allowed the darkness to overtake me and it seemed to intensify during the holidays. Though I always had grand plans to celebrate Christmas, clean and organize my house and even start a blog over the Christmas vacation, it seemed that none of this ever came to fruition. My days consisted of laying in bed, watching reality television and dare I say, having many afternoon Chardonnay cocktails. So, rather than seeking Jesus, I chose to drown my sorrows in the liquid depressant of alcohol. There, I said it, the cat is out of the bag. I’m not proud of it, but I’m owning it.

So, why is this Christmas different? How is this Christmas different? First and foremost, the winery is shut down. Instead of chatting with a glass of wine, I’m having constant dialogue with my Heavenly Father and I feel fantastic. I am allowing myself to experience my feelings, but I am not letting them dictate how I live. By a twist of fate, or what I like to call actual faith, I was introduced to doTerra essential oils and it has changed my life. The body has an amazing ability to “heal thyself” when given the opportunity. It is simply inspiring!

I purchased our tree in November through a school fundraiser and it was decorated the first weekend of December. Our house looks like a winter wonderland and the Christmas spirit has thrived this season. The kids and I even baked treats and delivered them to our new neighbors and community members! Yes, I made things from scratch and actually enjoyed it! Woot woot!

This morning, after stockings, of course, the kids prepared our traditional Christmas morning breakfast and actually served it to me in bed.  I was so surprised and incredibly thankful!  Tonight’s dinner will be spent in our new dining room and the twice baked potatoes being served were created by my own hands…solo. Can you believe it? In about an hour, we will open presents and I am fighting back the tears because I am so thankful to have rediscovered the joy of Christmas. God is good, all the time.

I would be lying if i said that I wasn’t super excited about finally starting a blog. I love to write and have put my creative juices on the shelf for far too long. And, even though I teach writing everyday, I buried my love of putting pen on paper, or fingers on a keyboard for many years. So today, right now, I have metaphorically blown the dust off of the typewriter and have been reborn. I am excited.

I saw a meme of Facebook last night that I believe will be the theme or motivation for this blog. It read, “One day soon these trials will be in the past & you will be telling an incredible story.” And there it is. Each of us has many incredible stories that can either stay a mess, or become our message. Tests can either drown us, or they can become our testimonies. So today, I am making the choice to open my heart and send out messages and testimonies that will hopefully help others. Isn’t that what life is all about?

Merry Christmas.

Standard