REMEMBERING

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Memories

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Collapsed

Constructed

Reconstructed

Remembered

I’ve heard of “false memories” but never experienced any. At least I didn’t believe I had until this past week. I was reminiscing with my mom about old times. I told her I remembered how our house had been broken into by the neighbor boy and how he ran his dirt bike into our door and crashed it in splinters. I could still see it in my mind’s eye – the broken door, the bike tire mark on it, the very real and ongoing fear that the boy was hiding in our basement.

Then came the surprise …  my mom corrected me saying we had only been broken into one time and that happened when I was just barely 4 years old … there were no neighbors living beside us then. The neighbor with the dirt bike moved in years later.  Mom said the door had been kicked in by a dirty boot and not a dirt bike. I asked her if she was sure, my memory was so clear.

I was flabbergasted – I mean, I really “remembered” it another way. I guess my mind had felt danger from the break in and then later from the troubled boy next door and at some time the memories had been combined into a new story; the story I “remembered.”

I always had a dislike and distrust of motorcycles, give me a horse any day. And I wonder if those negative emotions rooted from an old made up memory connecting burglary and bikes, broken trust and a feeling of unsafeness. Now that the memories are separated, I’m curious if I’ll still have the same repulsion if someone asks me to go on a “bike” ride in the future? Probably, since I still feel the knot in my stomach.

It’s strange how memory works. Strange in a curious and interesting sort of way. I appreciate memory more and more as I watch my own father’s memory sliding slowly away. I’m glad my mom is still around to keep us all straightened out. LOL

Has anyone else been surprised by a false memory before? I’m curious to hear your story!

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There and Back

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Getting Away. There. The Day to Day Disappears. Novel Sights. Relaxation for a While.

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And Back Again. Missing the Trees and Flowers. The Garden. Home. Family. Relaxing into the Regular Familiar Routine. But Rejuvenated. Seeing it Through New Eyes.

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Happy to Go There and Happy to Be Back Again.

False Beliefs

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I attended a myofascial release seminar in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina this past week. Morning and evening I walked the ocean beach – it’s so different than the midwest farms and forests I enjoy day in and day out.

I love continuing education and love to share the various venues these conferences are held with my parents. They were big supporters in helping me to get where I’m at and this is a nice way to share in the benefits at little extra expense for them.

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We drove down from Michigan to South Carolina and here my mom and dad are enjoying homemade peach ice cream from a small roadside stand (the peach orchard is in the background).

I had a nice blue collar middle class upbringing. My parents came from poorer families and ended up climbing in social rank and income after they married. I never really “wanted” for anything – we (me and my brother) had food, a roof over our head, toys, and vacations as kids.

I’ve always heard about False Beliefs and thought they must be for others – people who were abused and can’t trust others or set themselves up to experience repeat scenarios of abandonment. But this quality time with my parents allowed me to experience some of their beliefs which I found i had unconsciously taken on as my own, but in reality didn’t fit for me.

One of those beliefs was eating what is put in front of you. My mom is a member of the “clean plate” club and I was too. But I’m overweight right now and getting in touch with my hunger and satiation is an important part of my weight management plan. On our trip, I was finished eating before my plate was clean. My mom scolded me and tried to shame me into eating. I noticed that, was surprised I wasn’t triggered, and just simply said that I was full.

Another belief that came up was frugality. I do value frugality but I also enjoy being spoiled every so often. Although my parents can afford to splurge a little, my mom wants a “deal.” We were planning our meals and I asked where she and my father would like to eat and my mom told me to choose. I chose the hotel’s classy restaurant and was looking forward to the pleasure of interestingly prepared food. Yes, a meal would be expensive, but so what, it’s only a rare treat. My mom went, but I could tell she was sulking. She was in a negative condescending mood. Surprise – I didn’t get triggered – I reminded her that she had a choice. And I really enjoyed my meal and let the “guilt trip” pass by.

Eating everything on your plate and living frugally has served my mom and dad well and I try to not be wasteful either. I understand their values and once held them as my own even though eating everything served to me wasn’t exactly healthy and even though I’d feel guilty when I indulged in a little pleasure or extravagance here or there. I now choose my own values – I need to listen better to my inner hunger and I want to enjoy some of the pleasures in life without ruining the experience by feeling guilty. Not in extremes but in my own way. I’m finding out that I’ve got my own belief system and that’s just fine.

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My mom isn’t sure about my divergence – the new me – but I’m not disparaging her for how she chooses to act on her beliefs. I’m simply living my own life with a genuine smile. Blindly living out childhood dictates are the basis of false beliefs. It feels good to take off the blinders and curiously look at why I make the choices I do and to tune into my emotions – particularly guilt and shame – and see if they are legitimate or not.

We had 40 hours in the car together and 6 nights in the same hotel room and it really was a nice trip. What a gift to have my parents around at a time in my own personal growth where I can still experience and look back on why I believe what I believe and decide on the changes that will serve me better. Maybe I’ll even get my mom to lighten up a bit but then again maybe not, either way, it’s ok!

What Was, What Is, What Could Be

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I spend so much time in what could be it’s paralyzing sometimes. I’m not so caught up in what was in the past but I know that could equally be where others run from or fight their inner demons. But for me I’m plotting out the future course of my business, wondering what the benefits would be if I advanced my college degree, angsting over our poorly performing retirement investments and wondering if the American economy will go bankrupt.

What Was

Childhood Memories

Abuse of Ourself

Abuse from Others

The Invincibility of Youth

Past Foibles and Mistakes

High School

Places We Lived

Things We Had and Things We Didn’t Have

Deaths

Life Events Occurring in Society at the Time

 

What Is

Daily Sunrise and Sunset

Season of the Year

Annoyances

Favorite Pet

Current Relationship

Where We Work or Go To School

How We Spend Free Time

Aches and Pains

Family and Friends

Food We Eat

 

What Could Be

Weight

Beauty

Wealth

Recognition

Dream Job

Ideal Relationships

Freedom From ___________ (insert your own word)

Freedom To  ___________ (insert your own word)

More Time To Do What I Want

Peace

 

Like I said earlier, I tend to spend a lot of time in “what could be.” But I didn’t add the dark side to the list. I didn’t mention the brooding fears. You see, I also spend “what could be” time thinking about losing all the good that is currently in my life – losing the freedom my country provides me, losing my health, losing my reputation, losing my financial status, losing my aging mom and dad, losing the home I love, losing my work, losing my husband …  I spend way too much anxious energy in those areas.

The one place I can make a difference is in “what is” now – it’s where I can address “what was” and “what could be” … but I can’t spend so much time on past memories or so much time in dreams or fears that I don’t take time for the action of living in the moment. Even if that “action” is simply standing in awe of a sunset. In fact, I don’t believe I’ve ever regretted or experienced more peace than when watching the colors of the sunset spread over the sky. I don’t regret taking time off work and spending it with my mom and dad each week. I don’t regret making the effort to pray each day and take a walk with my husband in the morning. I don’t regret the lazy Sunday bareback rides on my 25 year old horse or the adventures in the woods with my dog.

I’m going to redouble the conscious effort of fully embracing each moment now – the pain, the tastes, the pleasures, my friends, my family, my dog and my horses, my husband, summer activities, an enjoyable book, and of course by greeting the sunrise and sunset of today. I’m going to let go of the paralyzing fears of “What Could Be” and focus on the day at hand.