Ok, life, in so many ways is forward motion. We cherish this. We find relief in being other than the scared 20 year old, new to the large world. We are gratified to be recovered from a bad break-up or dry spell in the past. And those symbolic moments in our life that define us, we often have framed to honor the transition and place a mark in time.
For many of us, something of the past will be stirred and reawakened as the holidays roll around…
Yes, the phenomenon of becoming our formerly angsty-teenaged selves in the company of parents and siblings is not new or uncommon. Many will comment on it. But, since we can count on a certain measure of revisit, why not make a new kind of plan for responding?
Hallelujah that we grow, and things in life come to look very different! Here is the gem of what I suggest we try as the inevitable revisit finds us this holiday. Notice just how different. See how much what you have Always seen (your brother’s harsh sense of humor, your sister’s condescension, etc.) could actually look different from where you stand right NOW.
Invite the new observer to join you. By that, I mean, yes, go along to see those you have known and loved for nearly all of your life and relish the nostalgia. But, also take with you the clarity of these very new adult eyes. Check in with this observer (give that perspective a wise name, if it helps) in those moments when you are in the emotional swirl of old emotions and behaviors… what does this wise observer see now, that was not visible last year?
This is absolutely possible. We just have to remember to invite the new sight when we are right in the thick of things. Of course, the observer may be clearer once you are quietly settled into the car ride home. That’s ok, too.
Just be sure to claim, for yourself, one of the greatest gifts of growing older… the gift of new sight - even into all things past and reminiscent. For, you are older now, and you see more.