Dealing With the Past Everyday, Whether it’s Horse Poop or Ice Cream

9 Aug

I’ll speak for myself, but I know for a fact there is one other person who agrees with my philosophy about the past’s influence on the present. Because of that, it makes it easier for us to comfort and lift each other up whenever needed. Lynette is my best friend although it will 10 years in October since we last saw each other. If I dwell on that fact, I emotionally hemorrhage; so on a lighter note, here’s a photo of us back in 2001 or 2002.

Hugs Lynette and Bev

Most of my followers probably expect me to be satisfied with the silver lining in the dark cloud, but finding satisfaction depends on surviving the storm and being willing to assess (and reassess) its damage. Sometimes it seems we are victimized by outside forces we can’t control; and there are cases when that certainly is true: a serious illness, the loss of a child…but 98% of the time, whatever smacks us upside the head has everything to do with an issue we’ve been trying to avoid. The issue and the storms we find ourselves in rarely seem to connect, but after doing the inner work , we find they do.

sea storm BLOG

I have a past as colorful and choppy as mosaic art; it can also be compared to a Pointillist landscape composed of thousands of tiny dots placed on a canvas in seemingly random order, but when viewed from a distance, each individual dot becomes an integral piece in a cohesive story.

                whole face pointillist

In 2000, when I opened a door, my world changed. I tried to pretend it away, but once opened, some doors can never be closed again. Because I was such a master of hiding the truth from everyone who knew me at the time, when I entered that door, my support system fell away, and I found myself on the journey of my life, alone.

Opening one door leads to opening another, which is exactly what I did. But here are a few interesting observations I made along the way: sometimes what lies on the other side of the door is too beautiful to look at for long. Sometimes what appears to be a diamond turns out to be broken glass. And often we simply can’t make our minds up about which door to open in the first place, so gingerly, we turn the handles, meekly peeking in; but once we discover the secret behind the door, we close then open it again and again,  doing that whole  c-r-a-z-y thing where we keep expecting a different outcome while doing the same old thing.

hallway with doors

The great thing about opening doors is the fact that you find the courage to walk on the tight rope of each individual, unscripted moment of life without a safety net, and OMG!, that’s a powerful feeling.

Although for several years I lost my familiar community of family and friends, I wasn’t actually alone for very long. Wandering the hall of opened doors, there was, at first, only a trickling of equally timid souls weaving in and out, walking close or around me.  But the deeper into the guts of the unknown I traveled, the more lively and heavily populated the crowds became.

Lynette was one the earliest hall-walkers I met, and once introduced, we buddied up for the duration of the trip.

The first door I opened, the biggest one, the one responsible for prompting the entire journey, was a door I kept opening and closing. Even as my ever-changing perception of what was on the other side vacillated from horror to ecstasy and back, I never slammed it shut. After a few years, I decided the best thing to do was to turn away from it.

winding trails

What walking away taught me was that entering it in the first place was the best choice I’d ever made, and that trying to completely seal that particular door would prove impossible in this lifetime. For me, that first door represents the precise group of Pointillist dots that form my legs. Without keeping everything I experienced on the other side of the door in my heart; I would not be able to move forward.

While not quite afraid of the pivotal door, for me it’s like the sea, I have a healthy respect of its power while admiring its seductive ruthlessness, its beauty, and the impulsiveness of unyielding focus. If I pretended the past never happened, I’d be doomed to repeat it.

woman and sea merged BLOG

 

I’ve been working everyday since 1997.  And I’ll continue to work for the rest of my life, if that’s what it takes to support the world I created having opened a series of amazing doors.

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20 Responses to “Dealing With the Past Everyday, Whether it’s Horse Poop or Ice Cream”

  1. Archita August 9, 2013 at 8:23 pm #

    Amazing. 🙂 I loved it , Itty.:)

  2. Tracy August 9, 2013 at 9:37 pm #

    I am a hall wanderer too!! Oh your post made so much sense to me and made me realize I’m not alone in this journey… Others wander too!

    • ittymac August 9, 2013 at 9:40 pm #

      I found the most wonderful people I’ve ever known wandering through those halls! Keep your eyes and mind open, and have a GREAT time!

      • Tracy August 9, 2013 at 9:41 pm #

        I am having a great time:-) I’ve recently opened a big door and am going through:-)

      • ittymac August 9, 2013 at 9:42 pm #

        Walking the high wire without a net simply cannot be beat!

      • Tracy August 9, 2013 at 9:44 pm #

        Yes:-) never too old either to go through new doors! Life is a beautiful adventure!

      • ittymac August 9, 2013 at 9:44 pm #

        Yes it is.

  3. Claudia Anderson August 9, 2013 at 10:54 pm #

    Your story resonates like a secret whispered between friends…even though we don’t know the secret nor need to. The whispering u
    connects us all…

    • ittymac August 9, 2013 at 11:00 pm #

      I love that you get me, Claudia. Thanks for following my work.

  4. witchyluck August 10, 2013 at 7:10 am #

    I have an odd tendency to paint the doors…

    • ittymac August 10, 2013 at 8:45 am #

      Paint them opened or shut?

      • witchyluck August 10, 2013 at 1:42 pm #

        Oh, i open them, im nosy. Sometimes i go through, sometimes not. Either way I am subject to leave fresh paint and flowers.

      • ittymac August 10, 2013 at 1:44 pm #

        I’m often surprised by how many women don’t even see the doors anymore.

  5. theempathyqueen August 12, 2013 at 7:39 am #

    B~ this is amazing!!! Between this and Aunt Bea, I am having double the enjoyment and double the fun.

    • ittymac August 12, 2013 at 8:57 am #

      😊 You stay pretty busy in the Empathy Kingdom yourself! I love reading your work too, so what we appear to have is a mutual admiration society!

  6. Holistic Wayfarer August 17, 2013 at 8:55 pm #

    Precious photo. I love the description of your past.

    • ittymac August 17, 2013 at 9:16 pm #

      Thank you so much. Your time means more to me than you can imagine.

  7. Claudia Anderson August 18, 2013 at 7:43 pm #

    What is (looking for the word..) rewarding…about this post is not only the blog that started it but the threads that connect us all…

    • ittymac August 18, 2013 at 7:48 pm #

      You’re right; we are all connected. Without a single piece the puzzle would be incomplete.

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