Sometimes as we move bravely through our days we carry a burden from our past that ruins the quality of our life now and prevents us from experiencing the blessed life that is the birthright of us all. But suppose we can heal our past if we wish?
Suppose we can see what we imagined was a difficult experience or trauma in our childhood in a new way? For example, I realize now with hindsight that what I thought was a lonely, desolate, wasted period of my life was actually a time of considerable blessing. It opened a door to a new experience of myself. It helped instil a longing for deeper meaning and happiness in life.
I felt alone and abandoned for four long years, from the age of eight to the age of 12, when I was evacuated from London to the Devon countryside in the early days of the Blitz. It's true that my aunt Eva was there to take care of me. But the cottage where we lived was quite remote, and I sure felt alone. I had no friends. And with Dad away as a war correspondent in India and Burma, and Mom working in Harrods bookshop in London, I was separated from both of them in what seemed a strange, alien environment.
Before I was evacuated, I'd lived with my mother on the fifth floor of an apartment block in central London. What did I know of the countryside? I was a child of the city. But here's what I see now that I didn't see before.
Being sent to live in a remote cottage at the end of a quiet Devonshire lane -- a cottage with no electricity, of course -- gave me the opportunity to suddenly become aware of two things that have proved to be critical components of my life ever since.
It opened my eyes to the magic of Nature. And it introduced me to stillness, the primeval stillness that we are conditioned to fear but which I now know is the source of all true wisdom and the door to true meaning and happiness no matter what our age.
What I thought of as wasted years opened my eyes to the magic of birds, and fields, and books, and reading, and picking blackberries, and exploring Devon lanes. I see I was given the gift of safety. I see how miraculous it was when my Mom came down to visit from London and we went on long bike rides to the sea.
I see it was actually a joyous thing to sit in quietness around the living room table with my aunt and sometimes my cousin -- after aunt had lit the Aladdin lamp -- eating apples I had picked earlier from the little orchard at the rear of the cottage. And I am thankful for all of it.
How about your early years? Is there anything you would like to heal, bless, and make whole as you bring it to the light of now, the light of your present day awareness?
As we touch the timelessness of our own unconquerable spirit is anything beyond the reach of our love?
I would love to share any thoughts you may have on the above. Please write, won't you? And if you enjoyed this article, please share it with a friend. Good luck and God bless.
Picture credit: Jennifer Cawley Photographs