An Introduction, A Beginning, Let’s Get Started

Its Never Too Late to Have a Happy Childhood. . . 

I first heard this brief declaration from our church leader. It felt right to me immediately. It presented to me the possibility of a whole different set of choices about my life. Choices I could make at any time and any place, choices about how to react to what the world had presented me in the past and what the world might present to me in the future.

Inherent in the terms used is a degree of judgment; that childhood is better than adulthood. I think, in the simplest view, childhood is a time of play and enjoyment. It is a time full of openness and lacking in judgment. It is a time of wonder and excitement each and every day. To wake up each day as an adult, and to seek out pleasure and enjoyment, to be playful and open and lacking in judgment would be wonderful!

One way to achieve a happy childhood in my adulthood is letting go of the experiential filters I have built up over the years. These filters determine how I will react to a set of circumstances. We all of us, allow our past to inform our future. In a very basic example, when we were younger, we got burned by something hot. We quickly learned not to touch hot things. Thus our past informs the decisions we make today and in the future.

But what if some of these past experiences block us from having things that would be good for us today? Several years ago I was forced to see how my view of the past was affecting my relationship with my father. I realized that I had been harboring resentment towards my dad for the way he had tried to raise me. I was literally wallowing in my own self-pity about how badly my dad had treated me! Suffice it to say, when I spoke to him of my feelings he did not even know why I was upset with him all these years.

I had been poisoning my feelings toward him for years and he did not even know why. Telling him I was sorry for judging him was freeing! He was able to reflect on how it was for me and to see how it might have been less than great, and apologize.

I believe it was freeing for him too. Today I speak with my dad and think of dad with no resentment whatsoever, and I feel so much better because of a simple phone call.

Today, when I think back on it, I do not dwell on the unhappy way I felt treated by my dad (most of it was in my head anyway). Rather, I have found that it is not too late to remember and to savor my happy childhood.

Can you think of ways of thinking that are keeping you from a happy childhood?

Can you see ways in which the past is shaping your present and future, to your detriment?

Can you let go of your history in order to shape a happier today?

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~ by in2l on October 19, 2006.

2 Responses to “An Introduction, A Beginning, Let’s Get Started”

  1. Beautifully written and provocative post! looking forward to more of your writing!

  2. Love your writing & design of your site.

    Thanks for your inspirational words on Natural High’s “election day” post.

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