Today I got out and went on a lovely bike ride. It's been so hot here in California, and I really enjoyed having a leisurely Sunday morning followed by some time outside. Lately, if I've wanted to get out I had to get up and get out right away, or not go at all. I love living in California, but I am so glad the fall season is nearly upon us!
While I was riding, I was thinking of how I hold onto past feelings from people I felt let down or hurt by. Specifically, I was thinking of one of my parents, and the tenuous relationship we've had over the years.
I've worked out a lot of my feelings over this, but sometimes, I can still feel myself holding onto those past experiences and feelings. Even now, after this person has changed and shown considerable growth, I still see them as that overbearing, angry and critical person from my childhood and teenage years.
I realized today, that it's almost as if I'm holding this person emotionally hostage. I'm forcing them to stay in one place, and to always be that person I remember them as. In some ways, this justifies certain things I've done, things I did because I was either emulating their behavior or projecting my inner pain outwards, onto others. I began to wonder why I want this person to stay as that vision in my mind, when I hated them when they were that person. Harsh words, I know, but it is what it is.
Wouldn't I rather see them as they are now, or at least try to be more objective in my view, so that I could let in the love? Love is so much easier to carry around than hate.
As I biked, I thought about how much I've changed, and how much it would hurt me if I wasn't allowed to grow and be different. What if someone was insisting on tethering me to my past in the same way? It of course would not feel good, and as I biked, I realized this hurts me as much as them.
I saw it like one person literally holding another hostage. When you're the person holding another down, it appears as if the person being held hostage is the one being trapped against their will. But isn't the person doing the holding trapped also? How can they be free if they have to make sure this person stays in place? How can I be free if all my energy is focused on tethering us to the past, just to prove something that only I can see?
By letting this person go, and by not caring who they were, or even who they are now, I allow myself to be free. I no longer have to put all my energy on holding onto something, but instead, can completely let go. And by letting go, I can receive whatever I was blocking when I was doing all that holding and controlling.