Sunday, May 8, 2016

Gratitude - Day 1 - Photos

Year of Gratitude - Day 1  

I am grateful for photos....

I’m not sure why it is, but lately as I have been looking to the future, I have been experiencing questions in my mind about myself, about my childhood and past decisions that I have made. Could I have done better, been better or made better choices? I realize I have some self judgement that maybe I should have accomplished more or have more to show for my life travels.

As I have scoured my recollection of my past I realize I really don’t have many of the details, only snippets of moments. Stories that come from a child's mind because that is who recorded them in those moments.

Memories really are quite unreliable because they only represent the interpretation of person’s experience therefore they are incomplete and totally subjective.

And like so many others, I have my laundry list of hurtful and painful stories and I find myself telling them in ways that justify my excuses now. But I know the truth, they are just that….excuses!

But listening to those excuses has been so amazingly enlightening to me in order to become aware of my own limiting beliefs so that I can bring them into balance with my highest truth and divine self.

This idea came to me to ask those who knew me as a child what I was like. What my personality or character qualities where like. As a parent and someone who works with children, I know that I acknowledge there is a core drive that we have even as a child, I was curious what those that knew me when I was little would say. Was I shy, strong, happy, sad…..what image did I put out to the world from the start?

I can admit that there was a part of me that just wanted someone to tell me that I was a good person, that I was good.

It is funny how the things our child self longed to hear and have acknowledged can still be wedged in us no matter how old we are and no matter how much every other part of us knows without a doubt that we are amazing!

So on my recent trip to visit my sister, I asked her this question. She was 18 when I was born so her understanding of those past days had a few more details to share. As we went through old family photos we had tears of laughter running down our cheeks as we recounted stories and laughed at the wardrobe and hairstyles of days past.

As page after page turned, what I started to notice was smiles. No matter the pain or frustration I remembered, these photos showed me I still had the heart to be happy and smile.

And that is what was remembered. How happy I always was and how I loved to make others smile.

As we closed the photo album I said to everyone, I don’t care what all the stories are, or what we went through in our past. They are just stories. What I chose to embrace is that we are happy positive people who can overcome anything. We have heart and we share joy.

I am so grateful for that beautiful moment shared with family going through those pictures. And I am grateful to photographs for holding snapshots of moments to help fill in the faded memories. I do love to smile.

I am grateful for joy!

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