Sunday, October 30, 2016

Post Estrangement: The task of letting go.

I am a work in progress.  

I am letting go.

I write about the process as a way of focusing my thoughts.

I find it interesting when I post about the pain of estrangement I get tons of feedback and replies and comments.

And yet when I post about the process of healing I get very few comments and even less feedback.  What I do often get is sad negative, comments announcing in black and white that "I will never heal"  or "that is too hard to do".

Still I persist in working on healing, because it is the way forward. 
  • Yes the past sucks. 
  • Yes the past is unfair. 
  • Yes the past is something I view with regret and anger and all the other negative words. 
But I don't live in the past.  I also don't live in the imaginary world where all will be better if only the other person has a change of heart. I try to live in the world of what is.  

This is it.  I have been estranged.
This is my life.  I live the abandonment.

Sure it sucks, and yes this bad thing has happened to me.  But those events I will not be given the power nor be allowed to define who I am now and who I am becoming.

I will not put my life on hold waiting for some change to happen in the others that have plunged my life into turmoil.  


Because that gives them power over me.  If I can't be happy until THEY change I have handed them the keys to my happiness. 

I refuse to give them that kind of power over me, over MY life.

Therefore, I am letting go. 
Some days I wish letting go was easier or faster, but that never stops me from working on letting go.

Letting go opens me up to the new, the possible, the other.

Letting go makes possible those events and experiences that are not available to me as long as I live in the past or in the state of wistful hoping for a change that is in someone else's hands.

I choose to embrace the changes that are within my influence.

In this manner I take back my power.
In this manner I take back my present and my future.

My life is filled with opportunities just waiting for me to embrace them. 

Renate Dundys Marrello

2016 - 10 - 30

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Tuesday, October 11, 2016

Post Estrangement: Motivation to remain on a healing path

Staying on a healing path is hard work.  I am reminded about this every day not only by my own struggles but by the feed back that I get from my readers.

The most discouraging messages that I get are the ones from those in the early stages of grief that say "I will never get over this"  or even more disheartening ones that say; "I try and I try but I don't seem to be getting any better".

And yet I keep forging forward on this difficult journey, not because I am in any way unique but because I am stubborn. I have decided that I will do whatever it takes to heal, to move forward with a life filled with those things that matter to me, love, compassion, forgiveness and faith that the path I am one is the one I am meant to walk.

I think the important thing for me to keep revisiting is that healing does not shut my heart to the pain of estrangement nor does it end the sorrow that I feel over what has been lost. 

Healing however allows me to find peace within myself, to not live each day as though estrangement was "the" end, but rather an ending.

In being estranged I have had to learn a way to see beyond this ending towards a new beginning, while at the same time accepting and recognizing that this is not the way I wanted things to be, accepting the shattered dreams and that my expected might have beens will never come to pass.

As much as I struggle with this I also wish to hold out hope to others that healing is possible.  Healing does not restore what was, but it does affirm that my life matters.

Today I  saw a message by Les Brown and the sentence that spoke to me most deeply was this: 

“It is time to hold your head up and 
decide to never let anything turn 
you around.” ~ Les Brown

This reminded me that one of the great hurdles to overcome in healing from a traumatic experience is the shame of worthlessness.  It is often the one thing that pushes me back harder than my healing and moving forwards energy can offset.  And yet it is the one thing that at the same time makes me dig in my heels in obstinate refusal to give up.

When negative or disempowering thoughts threaten to overwhelm me, to turn me around from my forward healing path it is when I most have to remember to believe in my own power of goodness.

It is in developing a strong belief in my values and their ability to keep me on track, which keeps me believing that I have the ability to rise above my negative inner bully.  It is remembering that these negative thoughts originated with those who would bring me down that keeps me fighting harder than ever to climb out of the prison of dis-empowerment.

My refusal to accept emotional defeat because of the opinions and actions of others is one of my strongest assets.  I refuse to allow their bullying behaviour to sabotage my life, my healing journey, my core values and beliefs. I refuse to be defeated by cruelty and abuse.  Yes I may suffer the scars of emotional trauma, but that will not keep me from celebrating the goodness within me. 

I may not be strong enough yet to stand up to them face to face in verbal combat, but I am strong enough to defend my inner honour and integrity; to put up boundaries that prevent those negative attacks passing within, to my safe place.

Within the walls of my sanctuary I know my worth, I respect my principles, I celebrate my dreams, and I risk getting to know what my true potential is and most importantly, I love who I am becoming.

Renate Dundys Marrello

2016 – 10 – 11 

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Friday, October 7, 2016

Reflections on my Healing Journey

Recently I had the honour of participating in a journey of discovery and reflection at The Longhouse Quiet Land Healing Lodge. During the women’s sharing circle, Grandmother’s words were spoken by Gentle Birdwoman that continue to resonate within my spirit.

“baa shaa-way daan” “In A Sacred Way, May We Be”

I want to continue to remember these words and also the wisdom about using “we” instead of “I”.

So much of our lives are framed by the concepts of me and I and mine; my pain, my happiness, my life, my friends, my feelings. Even in healing we seek in an ego centric way; I want to feel better, I want to discover my destiny, my purpose, my spiritual path.

For 7 years now I have been walking a path of seeking healing and connection and purpose. And I realize now it has been all about me and my needs and desires and goals. Yes I have learned to pray for others through working on developing compassion in my wounded heart. I have learned to wrestle with the hard journey of forgiveness. I have learned how to accept and honour the pain in others, accepting them for who they are, even while protecting myself from the harm they inflict upon my spirit.

What I have not before encountered is the concept of “we”; “In A Sacred Way, May We Be”. 

To acknowledge that as much as I want a spiritually guided journey to understanding the goodness possible within me, I have to also want that same goodness for others, even those who have harmed me.

I have often played with the idea that praying for the healing of the hearts of those who harm others is part of a sacred journey. I have even introduced into my daily reflections times to send prayers of healing even to those who are the source of my sorrow, the sorrow of the world, the harm to Mother Nature. But “In A Sacred Way, May We Be” is even more powerful.

It reminds me that I do not heal in isolation. Yes I travel the soul searching journey alone, I struggle and learn in isolation, I discover my pathway and this discovery is all good. But these words; “In A Sacred Way, May We Be”, remind me that if only I heal then my relationships with those who are still wounded are not healed. They remind me that if only I heal then the world’s sorrows do not heal and if only I heal then Mother Nature remains wounded.

“In A Sacred Way, May We Be” reminds me that a prayer must be inclusive for all. 

To be included in my healing journey are those who have begun the journey, those who have begun to seek the path and those who are not yet upon the path and even for those who do not even yet realize that there is a path to be found.

Even as I discover my own healing I must pray for and include all; even, or maybe especially, those whose actions thrust me out of my comfort zone and forced upon me the discomfort, sorrow and anguish that set me upon this path.

My new friend Gentle Birdwoman wrote; “Together, we are always stronger”.

This strength begins by supporting those who understand because they share the path of sorrow and the challenges of healing. However, it can’t stop there. After finding the strength to heal the self, there is the next challenge of praying for the healing of the “other” and the healing of the “we”.

Renate Dundys Marrello
2016 – 10 – 07

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I love when you share my page to spread the word.
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