in relationship with FORGIVEness

Hmmmm forgiveness.

A tumultuous relationship we've had, forgiveness and I. 

In some sacred conversations I've been having this week, this word, this thing, kept surfacing as I witnessed this beautiful soul. In fact, it's been surfacing more often then not. Never directly, but as I peer back through the last few months, it's been there.

f o r g i v e n e s s

Of course these conversations, these 'other' people's stories are a mirror for ME to go there. Not sure I fully buy into the notion that everything is a mirror (e.g. what we resent or are most irritated by in others, is in fact a mirror of what we struggle with in ourselves), but it's probably more often true, then we're consciously aware it is. 

We're always receiving opportunities for growth. But our timeline and the Universe's timeline aren't always in sync on a conscious level.

after my TBI

Through these reflections - literally, symbolically, and metaphorically, I realized that it {aka forgiveness} had come up in some healing sessions I sought out after my TBI. At the time, it did not feel like something that held relevance for me {ahem, I see the irony now}.

I didn't think I needed it, 'this wasn't part of my healing process' I'd say to myself, but went along. I suppose, on some level I trusted the truth of it, and the insights + wisdom of this healer.

I don't believe I was consciously resisting forgiveness, I simply didn't think there was anyone or anything needing forgiveness. In the way that this lack of forgiveness was blocking me, or holding me back. Or perhaps I just felt I had far bigger challenges to face + places to focus my energy, my limited 'spoons', my very limited brain power. 

SIDE BAR :: At that specific time, all I wanted to do was go back to work. So fucking bad. It's all I could see, hear, focus on ... on a conscious level. 

The thing is, when we are 'gifted' with a big healing journey aka a massive life crash or rock bottom fall, I've come to realize that it's never just as it seems to the naked eye. It's never 'just' the fall, the break, the injury, the primary cut so to speak. There's always a ripple of secondary and tertiary, and whatever comes after tertiary (LOL) ... that is, if you're ready, open, willing. 

I believe we're all capital H 'here' to grow. Our Soul is always looking for openings. The Universe is always creating them. Sometimes we proactively collaborate with them, sometimes we open just a crack, sometimes we flat out can't/don't/won't listen, and we Fall to our bottom. It is from this solid ground that we have no choice, but to choose. 

always an invitation

It's always an invitation. Never required, per say. 

It'll come back around, that invitation. This life or next, or the next. To "go in", to soften through the layers, to be with and to release some of the fears n hurts that have formed a calcification around our heart, our soul.

We are invited. Always. But never forced. Never forced to see the shit, to be with the shit, to release the shit. Yet, it is through this process, and many only through this process, where we cultivate the capacity to shine it into, alchemize it into, a crystal of clarity, insight, understanding, and into more you, more YOU; a decoding, revealing, releasing, restoring, refuelling.

it's yucky

I didn't care for the taste of it. Forgiveness can feel like a sticky, murky, yucky medicine. A universal theme in human life, one that's hard to live long without bumping up against. Being asked to dance with it, between you and yourself, you and others, you and the world, society, humanity, the Universe, God. 

Instead, it is often repressed or ignored {like I did/do, and to be honest, in reflection of late, I have never been quick to forgive, even as a child, instead grew more fiercely independent - shutting down the vulnerability of it all - and quietly distanced myself physically, but of course energetically the tie remained}.

All with good-ish intention of course. It's a form of unconsciously permitting the anger/sadness/resentment/ _______ to remain as protective fuel, (self)righteousness, or perhaps a way to justify our reaction to the hurt, which becomes the illusion of a safety blanket, safe and warm. I picture myself rocking, self-soothing in my illusion-blanket, softly whispering, 'nnnnnh, don't make me go into those places, not going'.  Sweet ignorance. Head in the sand. Easier. 

heavy bag of poison

Forgiveness asks us to go there and explore the difference between:

The release of forgiveness, the liberation of no longer holding onto and carrying that heavy, unwanted bag of poison, we mistake as helpful, useful, safe.


Condoning whatever happened.

I don't believe capital F forgiveness is about condoning or saying what happened was right/fair/ just/understandable/_______. Instead, it's an act of freeing YOURSELF. An act of liberation. And in that act, you also plant a seed in the forgiven. A seed in their soul to learn and grow and heal the suffering too. The suffering that long proceeded the hurt in question.

Through awareness, courage, and choosing to relinquish the space that it was taking up in your being, the space needed to hold onto it, we are freeing up and opening wide to be filled with nourishment - body, mind, heart, soul and/or spirit.
{Yes, it takes up space and time (energetically). And who's got space and time for that shit. Right?!}

what happened

In hindsight, I did do some powerful forgiveness work back then, which created clarity and fluidity in my spiritual spine, in my recovery, in my rebirthing post-TBI. But I realize and I admit, it wasn't a process fully wholeheartedly undertaken.

I have more there to be seen. More to be processed. I feel a willingness arising.

My work, my daily work of capital L love + capital Y yoga, helps. A lot. But F it's work.

And it's always a choice. 

soul meetings. sip me. choice.

It's always a choice. Yes, this choice thing is something I remind myself of often. I speak to often. I weave into classes, workshops, lectures, teachings, often.

Life Lived. On Purpose. With Purpose. Fuels me in ways I can't even describe. A manifesto. A mission. A mantra. An intention. It's all of it. 

So I'm at this divinely special coffee shop in Maui, sipping on my bullet coffee post-Yoga. A gal sits down at the table beside, and pulls a book from her purse. It's "The Artist's Way". I make eye contact, smile, and reach out. Touching the book I say, "Isn't it incredible?" ... "Do you practice Morning Pages?" I ask. To make a long story short, she shares her experience, a common experience I've heard from friends and students about the Morning Pages or Meditation practice {including my own}, an inner dialogue that goes something like, 'Why do I have to do this, this is taking too long, what's the point, what a burden, what a chore, etc.' Almost as if someone else is making us do it, that there is a right way or wrong way, that it's being imposed on us vs. being this delicious gift we GET TO experience, that we have the opportunity to practice and receive. No one 'out there' is making us do it. No one but our SELF.

It's a choice. 

We always have a choice to engage in growth. To practice growth. Physically, emotional, mental, spiritual. There is a time for it. We need rest, pause, refuelling. This is where the kindness, compassion, warmth, patience, and a deep breath come in. BUT. But if you're waiting for it to feel comfortable or timely, you may be waiting an eternity.

Don't wait an eternity.

We're capital H 'here' to grow. Growth is uncomfortably nourishing. By design. 
Ease does follow.

To feel it, we need to cultivate pause and awe within, between, and around the work and between each growth spurt. Be intentional. Be kind. Be gentle.

This is not easy work. 

what's your relationship with forgiveness?

Forgiving Self. Forgiving mistakes, illness, injury, loss, hurts, trauma, pain, suffering, choices.
Forgiving then unknown. Forgiving the unexplainable.
Forgiving others. Forgiving society, humanity, the earth.
Forgiving the Universe. God.

Sometimes one is way harder then another. 

What is your relationship with forgiveness? Start there.

Then see if you can release a poison pill from the fiber of your being. From the soil of your soul. Start where you feel some traction, some flow. Then grow from that place of strength.

Write them all down. Seek out a forgiveness prayer to release.
Speak them.
Burn them after. 

As Trevor Hall says in his song Forgiveness (feat. Luka Lesson), "Forgiveness is giving, so give yourself this gift from time to time."

Forgive everything that has ever happened, life is everything we can imagine laid out in patterns of pain and passion, you cannot control it, so keep your compassion. There are no accidents, there are no factions, there is no ‘us & them’, nothing to borrow or lend, no enemy of friend. And only forgiveness can make that happen. Forgiveness is giving, so give yourself this gift from time to time. Let all of your mistakes, become all of your greatest gifts in disguise. Forgive everything that has ever happened ... Forgive.
— Forgive by Trevor Hall (feat. Luka Lesson)


... like most things, this post is a work-in-progress. A meditation musing. To be continued.

May you be fuelled by peace & possibility. Love. Always love. Keep going. One breath. One moment. One intentional choice at a time.