Wednesday, October 05, 2011

Bubbles of Joy

On the bridge over the Fraser River
I find it so incredible that Thanksgiving is once more just around the corner. Where did the last months of 2011 go?

Soon, it will be Christmas! And then New Year's Eve...and the year 2011 will drift away into the past.

Years ago, when I was in my teens, I wondered where I would be when I was in my sixties. I didn't realize, at that age, how quickly the years pass...and that I would be here, in my dotage, before I knew it.

The Williams Lake Stampede Grounds
And really,I couldn't grasp the fact that each day would quickly recede in my memory, into the mists of Time. In my youth, I truly thought I would remember each and every moment...of heartache, grief, intense joy and anger.

I do remember the dramatic, life-changing occasions...yet the details, the fine-tuning that occurred, what I did to learn the lesson that had been presented to me...those have mostly left me.

Williams Lake
Sometimes, something will come up, however, in conversations or events that jog pieces of memories I've buried deeply. Dreaming also reminds me of choices I might have made throughout the moments, days and years of my life.

Not all of those choices were fact, many of them weren't. And these are the ones that come up, during quiet or even not so quiet, moments. It seems quite strange to me...I thought I had put the past completely to rest.

The beautiful, green Chilko River
But every once in awhile, a sharp dagger inserts itself into my heart...a dagger which reminds me a former decision may have had severe consequences...maybe not so much for me, but for others in my life.

It is quite like an awakening.

Pelicans! Photo taken from information booth
I've learned something, though, with all these old thoughts and decisions I made years ago trumpeting their way back into my mind. This time around, when those past actions return to haunt me, I actually am able to face them, to unravel them, to allow the hurt to appear, to forgive others and myself, and then to let them go.

Something I quite obviously did not do the first time around, when these events actually happened. I'd guess the actions required to reach forgiveness were not done at the time.

Information Booth
It seems to me, during this flood of folderol which moves through my senses, I am happier after I've let some relatively small thing go...and so, as these past events assault me now, I have learned travelling to the other side...the forgiveness side...well, it might be difficult for a few moments, but once it's done...there are bubbles of sheer joy which flow throughout.

So even if time passes so quickly and memories fade with its passage, it seems events which turned out badly, if they haven't been dealt with, will come the age of sixty, or seventy or even older.

Hay field in the Chilcotin
I know a lady who is 95 years young, with an inoperable cancer. She told me she lived her life in pure denial. Every time harsh words were spoken, every time an accident occurred, she would take the words or the accident and shove them deeply inside. So deeply, in fact, that more often than not, she never thought of them again.

Until now. With a laugh, my friend told me it was impossible to get away with anything...those deeds that were hidden in a bottomless void in her mind eventually caught up with her.

At the age of 95.

Thanksgiving, of course, returns each and every year. As I write this, I try and remember past holidays, specific things about Thanksgiving. I cannot. They all meld into one. 

An old barn in the Chilcotin District
This is the thing, though. I am not in control of when the troubling past returns for me to deal with. I wish I was...hurting thoughts, from the past, can engulf me at the most inopportune moments. And then, I can find myself reacting to something in an angry or emotional manner. I find my reaction is fuelled from a past event...and not the present one at all.

It's a really good thing to know...

I feel much lighter these days, those bubbles of happiness much more prevalent.

This year, we will travel to the Coast for another Thanksgiving with the family. This year, I will go with a little more awareness of what makes me tick.

The years pass by so quickly, as if life were all a dream.

The Sun, Clouds and a green Orb!
Perhaps one day, in the near future, I will awaken completely, to a life no longer held back by dark, slimy sludge.

Sounds pretty good to me...

Happy Thanksgiving! May your day be filled with good thoughts, from the past and the present!


  1. It has been summer here (temperatures in 80's and 90's) until yesterday when the first clouds rolled in. The coming of fall always reminds me that life like summer won't last forever. I wish I could find a way to enjoy fall and winter.

  2. I often think I've let go of some anger or resentment, that it's in the past, no longer important, certainly not affecting my present. But lately while working with affirmations about forgiveness and and about seeing with love and understanding, I am surprised to discover old anger and resentments coming up. Why, I find myself downright growly! Seething! Apparently I've still got some serious letting go to do. Sigh. The inner work is never done!

    Have yourself a wonderful holiday, Maid Marion.

  3. "in my dotage" If those are the symptoms of dotage then I'm as ahead of my time as I've always been. I'm glad you feel lighter, it's true that things always come out in the end, and once you've dug them up they fade away nicely if unpleasant or make you smile if happy ones. Have a fabulous time and squeeze those little babies for me while you're there. Happy Thanksgiving!

  4. Anonymous1:27 p.m.

    Happy Thanksgiving to you Marion!

    I appreciate the reminder to deal with difficult situations in the present. Your 95 years young friend is a courageous person to honour her past and to surrender to what is happening for her now.

    Blessings to you and yours !

  5. Your dotage! You're a funny girl, Marion.

    "Where did the last months of 2011 go?"

    Hell, I'm still looking for the first three months of 2008.

    If the 95 year "young" friend had died at 94, she would have done okay because she would have left the room before all those years of repressed memories hit her like a brick.

  6. Happy Thanksgiving from the Sunshine Coast (but a bit cloudy today). Mom in 95 years young. She gladly got in the car for an 8 hour ride up from Bellingham to stay in our Powell River condo for a month. She never talks of past decisions and how they affected her life. At this point, she remembers good things - and I hope that is the way it will remain. - Margy

  7. If we are as fortunate as the 95-year-old woman, life like a river continues to flow despite our mistakes and wrong decisions at the forks of the road. Little do we know until looking back over the years how deeply our choices impacted our personal stories. Yet I suspect no matter what decisions we have made there will always be some unexpected and undesired outcomes. On the news yesterday I heard of an eighteen-year-old boy in BC who gallantly tried to break up a fight and died as a consequence of getting involved. He meant only good but this was the outcome. How does one forgive fate, others and ourselves along life’s way? As difficult as it is to achieve, I think forgiveness and acceptance are the keys.

  8. marion, you know my story. this post carries me to a place where i cannot help but wonder what i am not forgiving. because i have been blessed with a precious life. i have so much richness and love all around me. and yet, my heart wss broken and to this day i cannot comprehend and i cannot move on. often i feel the blanket of forgiveness and i am thankful for it. but i hold on that piece of heart as though it is a tender jewel. and maybe it is.

    do i want to forget someone and something that has hurt me so deeply? honestly, i'm not sure. do i truly accept that it is over, the past is the past? honestly, i don't. i keep hoping for reconciliation, reunification even. i keep hoping souls know better and sooner or later they make things right.

    i look back too. some things are now blurred. but most often i am still looking ahead, hoping for the best, wanting the best.

    you and i deserve to stay up all night talking life and love, my dear friend. you teach me so much.


  9. Interesting - those thoughts that bubble up in you probably do so in all of us at one time or another. I find, as I age, that I can view my younger self with a degree of equanimity I thought impossible before. Now when I am assaulted by memories that make me wince, i shrug and say, "Ah well, i didn't know any better then."

    Hopefully, I do now!

  10. i find myself forgetting of past events that seem like lifetimes ago! indeed time is rocketing by and it's year end already. i've never thought what i'd be like at age 65. hmm... pray i'll be in a good place.

  11. I suppose that's what life's all about learning and reviewing ... but it takes two or more to make a good or bad feeling and more often than not the thing that cut us the deepest is the least remembered by the other.

  12. I guess it is the sludge which offsets and defines the opposite moonbeams of ones' life.

    Remember when high school seemed forever?
    Time is speeding up -- hellbound to nowhere.

  13. I was in my 50s before I figured out that forgiving someone did much more for my own spirit than for that of the person I forgave, who seldom either knew or cared. It's so much easier to move through life without all that heavy baggage. But I've learned well that forgiving doesn't mean forgetting and that sometimes, when a painful memory is rekindled by a word or even by a dream, the hurtful feelings are still as real as they ever were. The post-forgiveness difference is that those feelings pass quickly now that they're no longer poked and prodded by anger.

    I hope you and your family had a good Thanksgiving, Marion. And I hope you know I'm thankful for you.

  14. I find it harder to forgive myself than to forgive others.

    This is such an interesting read...I want to comment more, but DH is calling me to dinner in the kitchen..but I will be back.
    And happy thanksgiving