“Nobody can go back and start a new beginning, but anyone can start today and make a new ending.”
I saw the above quote from an email from The Wendling Group. In one respect I agree with the quote and think it is a good way to look at one’s life and potential.
But I’ve also found that my view of my beginning was merely a story, and that stories can be changed. For example, I long held onto the belief that my “biological father abandoned me when I was about 3-1/2 years old”. Over time I’ve come to realize that all I really knew is that he left when I was 3-1/2 years old. His leaving very likely had very little or nothing to do with me or with my siblings. I was able to release quite a lot of the emotional charge from the situation when I decided to look at it differently.
I even began to realize that my siblings and I may have made it MORE difficult for my biological father to leave instead of being a big part of the reason why he left. I simply didn’t know, so it made no sense for me to make things up–especially things that had caused me so much pain: Beliefs and feelings that led to abandonment issues and trying to impress people so that I’d be respected and maybe even liked (which only tended to repel them as they saw through the reasons why I was trying so hard).
The heavy weights of judgment, shame, and guilt were lifted from me when I began to open my mind to other possibilites about what really happened when I was about 3-1/2 years old.
I realized I’d been focusing on all the negatives from that experience. But that was only half the story. Many positives also came from what happened all those years ago:
My focus on family, friends, and other important relationships is in large part due to the loneliness I’d felt as a child. Perhaps also my empathy for others, and focus on easing the pain, loneliness, and suffering of others. And much of what I’ve accomplished might not have occurred without that extra drive to succeed.
In other words, I began to realize that I would not be the man I am today if I hadn’t experienced what I did as a young child.
I’m not suggesting that what I went through was fun or that I’d like to see anyone experience losing a parent at a yound age or any other major trauma–in fact I hope for the opposite for everyone. But traumas do occur, and I’ve learned that like every other aspect in life I can choose to focus on the positives or negatives.
My life has become so much better when I’ve chosen to focus on the positives and be grateful for them.
So, while I believe we all have the power to make a new ending, I also believe we have the power to re-write the story of our beginning by looking at it in new ways.