I was triggered

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“The spiritual life is a lot like gardening. We till and cultivate the garden of our heart, planting seeds of presence, openness, and the ability to respect whatever arises. We water each one so the things which are beautiful in us can blossom.” Jack Kornfield

We must pull up the ROOTS if we don’t want weeds growing in our “inner garden.” Your mind is like a garden, your thoughts are the seeds, the harvest can either be flowers or weeds.” Your choice.

When I get triggered like I did this week, I see it as an opportunity to recognize what weeds are growing in my garden. It’s also a gift if I’m willing to dig deep and get to the ROOT of the problem and pull out the weeds.

Rather than blaming, judging, shaming the person who triggered me or withdrawing and being resentful, I eventuallytook responsibility for my behaviors and reactions.

I was triggered by what one of my sons said to me. I immediately REACTED and said what was on my mind and it wasn’t pretty! At the moment, I didn’t see it as a gift or opportunity. I felt hurt, angry, saddened, and judged by my son. My ego was alive and well as I told myself a “story” about our relationship that wasn’t true.

 I journaled and allowed myself to feel it all, without judging myself or my feelings. I knew that allowing myself to really go into the sadness and anger would enable me to release it and EXPAND. I shared it with Larry and that helped get it up and out. He was loving and compassionate and didn’t try to fix me.

The next morning, I spent time alone to go within. I felt a lot of pain as tears flowed down my cheeks. I wanted to get to the ROOT of the problem. As a child, I could never PLEASE my mother and didn’t feel good enough no matter how hard I tried.

Whenever we are triggered by what someone does or says to us, it can be an indication that there is something inside of us that needs healing and transformation. I reacted strongly to my son’s remark and projected this unhealed pain still inside of me on him.  Rather than looking outside and expecting my son to give me what I needed or wanted, I knew I needed to give it to myself. I am the only one that can heal deep mother wounds, no matter how many years it takes.


I was given the opportunity to give myself the love, understanding, respect, compassion, and appreciation that I wanted from my son. Of course, it’s human nature to want all of the above from our children, but I cannot control what others do or don’t do.

After getting to the ROOT and pulling out the weeds (negative thoughts), I felt free and alive. I have never done this before, but I called my son and said, “Thank you for triggering me yesterday.” He was surprised and wasn’t even sure what I was talking about at first. We laughed and he said, “Your welcome mom, anytime.” I took responsibility for my reaction and being triggered.

A message from Spirit:

Dear Patricia, you are a miracle how you have grown and transformed your life. I’m so proud of you for your positive attitude, your faith, and how you are a vessel of love. Nothing and no one can take that away from you. Don’t let the remark from your son take your peace and power away. He loves you. Let it go. You just keep loving and living your life the way you do. All is well.

Thank you, Spirit for the willingness and grace to DIG deep and free myself from beliefs and behaviors that no longer serve me. I am choosing flowers rather than weeds in my garden. How about you? What are you choosing?

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Pat Hastings

Author, Inspirational Speaker, Spiritual Coach, Retreat Leader & Radio Talk Show Host

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