I believe I attract everything and every experience into my life for my highest good. It may be to help me remember the truth of who I am (there is no separation and we are all ONE and connected) or to release an old belief that no longer serves me, but hurts me and keeps me “stuck in the muck.”
Whenever I follow my heart, whether that be moving 6000 miles away from my friends and family or getting a divorce after 30 years of marriage, there is a good possibility I may be judged and will disappoint a loved one. It may not be something big like moving, it may be saying no or setting a boundary. Our loved ones may experience feelings of hurt, anger, resentment or even abandonment.
If I want to be happy, peaceful, live the life of my dreams and most importantly do God’s will, I must be willing to deal with others’ disappointments and possible disapproval. It takes a great deal of courage and strength to follow your heart, knowing it may disappoint and anger loved ones, consciously or unconsciously.
I have personally experienced withdrawal, avoidance and being ignored by others. This is painful when a loved one withdraws, and I don’t know why they are withdrawing or ignoring me (and they won’t tell me why). They may have buried their feelings of hurt, anger or abandonment and it may come out sideways. Until they are ready to share their pain and release it, there is not much I can do, but to send love.
Many years ago, when my son and family moved to Florida and I wouldn’t see them often, especially holidays, I had to give myself permission to feel the disappointment, sadness and anger. I remember standing at the edge of the ocean, screaming and getting my anger out.
At first, I judged my feelings and felt guilty that I was angry. After all, they were doing what was right for them, even though I wasn’t happy with it. Once I was able to identify my feelings and give myself permission to feel, my peace returned and I was able to send them love and even be happy for them.
For many years, when I was ignored, forgotten or a loved one withdrew from me and didn’t give me the attention I craved, I automatically thought I DID SOMETHING WRONG and it was my fault. There was always a story I made up in my mind as I tried to figure out what I did to hurt them. I often found out that it had nothing to do with me and I was taking it personally. Can you relate?
I lost my peace and power this week when an old belief that no longer served me reared its head. I spent a lot of time by myself in prayer and meditation, as well as writing and exploring where the belief came from. The old belief originated as a child when I felt responsible for my mother and her alcoholism. I unconsciously felt guilty and wrong that I couldn’t fix her or make her better. The search for love from outside of ourselves is a sign of arrested emotional development. We strive to be the best in order to be noticed and found worthy of attention and love.
Intellectually, I know that I’m not responsible for others’ feelings or behaviors. What they do or don’t do is their business, not mine. It is another story emotionally when I’ve been hurt or ignored, like I was this week. I had the opportunity to work through it and release the old belief of feeling responsible for others’ feelings and behaviors.
The first step of healing is to become aware of what’s going on within. Guilt is usually an indicator for me that I’m taking responsibility for another’s behaviors and feelings. The belief is REVEALED to be HEALED and RELEASED because it no longer serves me.
The truth is I am responsible for myself; my behaviors, feelings, attitudes and actions. I cannot control or change another person, no matter how much I love them.
What is important is that I keep my side of the street clean. If I’ve hurt someone unintentionally, I make amends, as well as let go of judgement, blame, resentment and anger. I choose love, I send love and surrender to a Power greater than myself. I will continue to follow my heart and do God’s will.
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