It’s been my experience that we do all have at least one Groundhog Day theme that keeps cycling around throughout our lives. Something that just seems to keep coming back no matter how much you feel you’ve dealt with it, done with it, just so bored with it! Perhaps each time it revisits you, you dig a little deeper and uncover and heal more of your pain around the issue, or maybe you’ve given up trying to fix it at all. Whichever way you greet it, can you look back and see it strung out like a row of lights back into your past? The relationships that it played out in? The regular triggering points that inevitably take you right back into that pain?
From an understanding of the psychological and physiological healing of trauma, what this repetition is trying to do is to resolve a traumatic experience. This is the lesson of the repeated experience, to find that missing piece and integrate it. Only when the whole experience can be fully integrated does the repetition cease.
Yesterday my trigger was spilt milk! Yes, I really was crying over spilt milk, – milk that had spilled over from a pan on the hob because I got sidetracked and didn’t get to it in time before it did that awful milk boiling thing. In that moment of looking at the mess I felt totally defeated, and touched into a place deep within me of shame, so powerful that for a minute or two I couldn’t face myself and just cried deep sobs of despair. It felt really heavy in my body and I wasn’t able to shift it with any of my usual uplifting techniques, so I gave into it, surrendered to its presence, and waited.
I have found through repeated experience that issues resolve in their own time; clarity cannot be forced, realisation is like a flowering that comes in its own season, and the moon cycles play a big part for me in guiding my progress through these energetic shifts. The moon’s energy is building towards renewal with a new moon later today and the planetary focus is on liberation from oppressive thoughts that have conditioned us away from our true identity.
Each time any theme revisits it can be like a doorway through which we have an opportunity to let in more light. So it was no accident that today I found the handle on the door of this experience, and opened it a crack; I was literally being given everything I needed to revisit this crack, my perceived fault and shame, and discover instead a new truth. As I began to create my daily image collage journal I was overwhelmed by my response to just one image (the fisherman surrounded by water).
My old story from the past of inadequacy, feeling I never had enough, that I was needy and yet never satiated, was revealed and I was able to see how my belief in it was literally holding and perpetuating its pattern so that it would continue to recreate itself in my present. It’s not what we actually experienced in our past that affects our present day reality and the future we are creating – it is what we believe about it. All letting go happens ultimately at the vibrational level, only when the mind is willing to let go of the certainty and sense that it tried to make around something that the body experienced as uncomfortable. What it took for me to transform this Groundhog Day theme was patience, awareness of natural timing, awareness of my own triggers and emotions, courage to visit my darkest places and stand in them to witness and accept my feelings, and my intention to see the truth by letting go of beliefs so that I can live my life in freedom as my true Self.
Blessed are the cracked, for they shall let in the light.
I’d like to share a short story on this subject that I first heard 10 years ago and it’s a powerful illustration. I do find that stories do so well at conveying a truth that might otherwise be unpalatable and rejected by our conditioned self.
A water bearer had two large pots which she carried from the stream to the house each day. Each pot hung on the ends of a pole which she carried across her neck. One of the pots was perfect and always delivered a full portion of water. But the other pot was cracked. At the end of the long walk from the stream to the house, the cracked pot arrived only half full. For two years the bearer ended up delivering only one and a half pots full of water to her house.
The pot which was perfect naturally felt proud of being able to fulfill the task for which it was made. But the poor cracked pot was feeling ashamed of it’s own imperfection. And miserable that it was able to accomplish only half of what it had been made to do.
After two years of what seemed like a shameful failure, it said to the water bearer one day by the stream, “I am ashamed of myself, and I want to apologize.” As the water bearer listened it carried on. “I have been able to deliver only half my load because this crack in my side causes water to leak out all the way back to your house. Because of my flaws, you have to do all of this work, and you don’t get full value from your efforts.”
The bearer said to the pot, “Did you notice that there were flowers only on your side of the path, but not on the side of the other pot? That’s because I have always known about your flaw. So I planted flower seeds on your side of the path, and every day while we walk back, you’ve watered them. For two years I have been able to pick these beautiful flowers to decorate the table. Without you being just the way you are, there would not be this beauty to grace the house.”
So often it is the very things that we judge ourselves most harshly for, feel most shamed about, that is what others appreciate and love most in us. It takes courage to bring our deepest pain into our own awareness and to release our judgment. Only then can we begin to appreciate the jewel we’ve been carrying that others could see but we could not. When judgment makes way for awareness, light and love are the results.