September 08, 2009

Amends

For more than a week I have been conversing with someone who knows my history. It has stirred emotion in me in a way I cannot yet fully digest. I left my hometown before my recovery process began. So, I was able to leave behind the people who were aware, first hand, of my behaviors. In the new town I was able to tell the story from my own perspective. Often, I was the victim in my story telling. Rarely did my story contain information of the wreckage I caused to other people. Frequently, I would only discuss the debris I left for myself.

Many times I have thought of the actual damage I have done. Many times I have thought that the change in my life has been a living amends to the people I had harmed that I could not locate to make personal amends. I believe my recovery is solid. I believe my lifestyle is a testament to my genuineness to live differently. However, these exchanges have left me thinking about the past more than I would like.

The person has assured me that all is forgiven. So, what is the reason this does not seem like enough? I believe one of the reasons is that they shared with me the fact that even back then they saw through some of my pain and insecurity to the person I am today. That is the part that has me baffled. I could not even see her. Yet, someone else could. And they have forgiven me for behaviors that I find revolting, perhaps, unforgiveable.

So, I have forgiven myself. I have asked for forgiveness. And I have lived the last sixteen years making the past right. I am searching for the reason I am feeling as I do today. As if something more should be done. As if a piece of that puzzle is missing.

I have been given feedback from several people I trust. They all concur that since I have dealt with the person I was then I would be better served to stop my mind from wandering back into that and just move forward with the person I am today. I want to do that. And I believe I can. This is just more than a gentle reminder that even when the past has passed, it is still a part of me.

Feedback welcome.

2 comments:

The Jedi Counselor said...

You know, I am reminded of a movie quote from a film that really hit home for me, and the quote is "we're not done with the past until the past is done with us." I have had a similar experience lately with a friend from my past who also made it out of the fire, and even after 12 years of being away, it seems like we never missed a beat as good friends. But I can see what you are saying because there is a part of me that feels guilty for digging up the past, however, maybe we worry about it too much. Maybe it's our own ego and pain that worries about the past when no one else does? I think maybe it's about reconciling my own feelings about who I was, and maybe seeing some old faces forces us to do that.

Paula said...

I think you nailed it about the guilt. And my being surprised by it because I have worked really hard on it. Knowing I am not the same person I used to be...but knowing that person has helped me become who I am. And maybe having fear that others still see me at that person?