As we head into the holiday season (Thanksgiving is only 6 weeks away for us in the U.S.) we face one of the most challenging times of the year; that being time spent with our extended family.
In many cultures this is not a big issue but in the U.S. we have mostly moved away from the extended family model and live nestled in our nuclear family. For many of us, we like the arrangement because it keeps us from having to deal with the wounds that extended family remind us of. As a culture we would rather these ancient hurts remain buried.
This holiday season, I am once again committed to honoring my extended family by practicing compassion and understanding. I hope each of you will make similar commitments and embrace the holiday seasons as an opportunity to learn more about yourself.
I want to take this opportunity to remind us all that no one knows our secret hurts better than our family members. They are, without a doubt, our greatest teachers. In many cases, it was these exact individualsÂ who helped us develop these painful memories, in the first place. It only makes sense that they are the ones to help us get over our resentments.
Today, I am thankful for having such skilled teachers in my life. Not only do I get the opportunity to examine areas in my life where I still do not love myself, but I also am offered plenty of practice at forgiving myself and others.
The otherÂ morning, when I awoke, I looked at the clock and saw it was flashing. I knew this meant that we had experienced a power outage.
As I reset the clock, I clearly saw thisÂ metaphor:
Each day is a new day.
Each day is a chance to start over fresh.
Yesterday does not have any power over today,
Â Â Â Â Â which I do not give it.
Today I may forgive my yesterday
and I may recommit to staying in Love
Â Â Â Â Â totally present in the Now;
Â Â Â Â Â in the newness of this moment.
Today, I am thankful for those who love me enough
Â Â Â Â Â to point me in the direction
Â Â Â Â Â I need to go,
Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â for my self-healing.
Today, I forgive myself
For all the areas
Where I fall short
Â Â Â Â of whom I think I Am
Â Â Â Â of whom I wish to be
Â Â Â Â of whom I think
Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â I should be!
Today I love myself,
Â Â Â Â Â just as I am.
When I love myself enough
Perhaps I will free myself
Â Â Â Â of my need
Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â for the approval of others.
As I begin my new day,
I am truly grateful
Â Â Â Â for each and every teacher
Â Â Â Â present in my life.
Today, once again,
I claim my independence.
Â Â Â Â as I affirm my freedom.
Â Â Â Â one and all!
Forgive everyone, everything, right here and right now. If you are truly successful at this practice, and the memory of that person has safe passage through your mind, your holidays will be filled with unprecedented blessings. If anything other than blessing shows up, transform it, right then, right there. Know that every such opportunity is an offering that only the other individual can give. Use it. Heal it. You will be so glad you made that choice.