End of the year. Time for resolutions. Goal setting. Letting go of old stuff and looking forward to new stuff. Someone recently asked my 3 “words” for 2019 and they came to me immediately. I’ll share them below. But first I want to share a few thoughts that have been rolling around my brain today as I ponder the concept of moving on.
One trait that will make me stop listening to someone in, 5 seconds flat, is wallowing. Rehashing things that are past. Going back to review something time and time again. Talking about it. Turning it over and looking at it again and again. Broken record. Can’t deal. Don’t want to hear it. Not listening. Fingers in my ears, “Blah blah blah, I can’t hear you.”
I do it. I have to admit. Not out loud, but in my head I have been known to obsess about “things” from the past. What I could have said, should have said, the whys and where-fors. But those times, honestly, are mostly at the peak of my inner crazy. And less often these days.
Typically I do not place much value on things that are done. When something happens I will usually have no interest in discussing how it happened or why. The fact is it happened and now we move forward from this place. No need to wallow.
Same for wallowing in past relationships. If someone is currently in your life, in a positive way, and things look productive in the future, great. But if there is no meaningful current relationship? Move on from all things “that person.” There is no value. There is no point in spending one minute on this thing of the past. GO FORWARD.
As I wrote this I made note of this tidbit. “Wallow” in English means to “indulge in an unrestrained way”. Used in a sentence : Stop wallowing in the past, there is nothing there for you. In Arabic, “walo” translates as “nothing”.
I am always working on letting go of things that are past. Letting go of thoughts that drag me backwards. Maybe I made this resolution at some point and it stuck. Not sure. But I do make a conscious effort to stop my thoughts when they trend backwards. Simply because there is nothing productive back there.
Here is one of my current reflections. I have friend who is in a very prickly life circumstance. Its a quagmire. There is an unpleasant force upon them that makes it impossible to move forward because they are held firmly in place at the hands of a very mentally unwell but financially rich individual. There is no escape through means of their own control. I talk to this person almost every day, when their kids are not around. So every school day let’s say. We can wrack up 19 – 20 hours a month on the phone.
I can tell you with 100% certainty that at no time in the past 29 years of our friendship, or the past 7 years of this shit storm, have they made any effort to go back and wallow. To ruminate. To review. To discuss and analyze. Never. We have discussed events of the past in order to help reframe or understand a current situation, yes. In a factual way. But they have never-not-one-time gone back to gratuitously rehash a time, event, or emotion without a current context. THAT is impressive. And oh, so healthy.
So you can imagine how hard my eyes roll when I’m sitting with someone who has a few drinks and then goes back to “that time” to rehash and wallow. I can’t. I’ve got no time for that. None. Not one second. Walo.
The second thought that has come to me in this context of “review and renew” for the new year is something that just occurred to me today.
Time passed should equal distance and perspective.
In a healthy mind anyway. So it was interesting to me when I thought about something that happened to me this summer and its aftermath, because I haven’t thought about it in months.
Now keep in mind, that this year, 2018, has been the year of me NOT being depressed. It was February 14 this year when I visited Annabella, rooted out the cause of my depression, put it down and walked away. On February 14, I was taking 300 mg of Wellbutrin and 20 mg of Cipralex, every day for the past 8 years.
I am currently taking 5 mg of Cipralex and haven’t considered myself depressed in months. So this event that occurred in the summer happened to a healthy brain. Important to keep that in mind.
During the summer I learned new information about an event that occurred in the distant past. This event was one that I had formed a whole narrative around and I carried it with me as a little fact bubble for the better part of my entire life. When I learned this new information it was shocking to me and immediately very traumatic. (I had a physical reaction and then cried/grieved for about 24 hours).
At the time, I discussed this with a trusted friend and said “there is no value in holding on to this or pursuing it. Nothing can come of it. Its just new information and that’s it.” I realized today that after that one day, I put down that whole bundle of information, and I walked away from it. The whole incident. I have not thought of it since, nor does it affect me when I think about it. Its done. Its over. This was something that I had thought about frequently in the past. So I’d say this is very positive news indeed. At the time I learned this information, I was genuinely terrified that it would have lasting effect. It did not.
From this little episode I learned once and for all, that the past has no value. Part of my depressive state reasoned this way: I can never let go of the past because that is where my family “lives”. My mother, my father, my brothers. They are passed, and past. If I let go and move on, I am leaving behind something far too precious.
I know now this is flawed thinking. You can “let go” of the past while still holding some very dear memories close to your heart. You just glance at these treasures, you don’t have to stare and cling.
Lessons can be learned and carried forward from the past. But the actual event / relationship / situation? No value. I learned that I may have a view to something from the past, but so did everyone else that was touched by it. It makes my version of events into fiction.
I might have spent years looking back on “the one that got away”, that one boyfriend who could have changed the course of my life, but the cold fact is, if I called that person today, he could easily say, “Oh. You thought we dated? I see. Well, I’m happily married and my life is moving forward without you in it, so thanks for calling, but thats’ not how I remember it.” I might look back on a Christmas that I thought was the absolute worst thing that ever happened and I remember every awful detail, but my sister could say, “Oh yah, that was a great time. I have a totally different recollection of what happened.”
Bottom line. If it’s in the past, it’s fiction. It’s over. It does not exist. It’s not a thing. Walo.
Put it down. Leave it there. Move forward.
I have been thinking about all of this lately because I walk everywhere. It’s my only mode of transport in Marrakech aside from a taxi which is a whole other topic.
Every single time I go out, I encounter at least one, more likely 12, barriers across my path. There is no way to move these barriers. I could stand in front of them and cry and get angry and rail against the system that makes these barriers socially acceptable. And I have believe me. My blood pressure goes wild sometimes. But I am going to choose to see them now, go around them and get on with my life. I am choosing this because getting angry has no value. If I go around it, it will be behind me and no longer a thing.
So. Here are my 3 personal keywords for 2019.
Attract : Expand : Blossom
Picture wide open spaces. Blank canvas. Bright, shiny, future goodness. I will be open to attracting new people, new love, new business, new opportunities, new ideas, new everything. I am attracting it like a magnet. Come to me baby, I’m ready!
I have an expansive mind set. I am ready to expand my world, my view, my love, my business. I am working hard to expand my energy, my health, and my knowledge.
I have been planting seeds for long enough. I have built a hearty and solid foundation. I am ready now to blossom. It’s time to take all that I have worked on and to let it go forward to the light.
“Walk into the light, Kathi.” Oh, NO. Maybe don’t do that. But at least take this time to expand and blossom and attract.
Love and kisses everyone. I am going to go now and purge the waste from Facebook, Instagram and my computer files as a way to make room for the New Year.
(P.S. If you don’t follow me on Instagram already, please follow me @prettykamel. I am working SO hard to grow my followers honestly without help from a bot. I have a friend who has 160 followers and who has NEVER posted a single image. And honestly never will! It’s a dead account. Its so funny to think there are 160 people out there who are sitting in wait of some miracle. And more people keep following them all the time. It’s insanity. Me? I lose, I gain, I gain some more, I lose. My followers are all over the place. But at least I’m feeding the beast. Speaking of which, I better go post in order to expand, and attract…..
Nicely said. Happy 2019.