I promised to write seven different articles each day starting from today till September 27th which of course is my birthday.
I apologize that this is coming late. The day was bright and good.
This is the first of seven articles #APieceOfMyMind. I do not know how best to express my inner most emotions but that is the exact context of this post. There is a future ahead, so we have to move on.
That today marks the seventh year of my mum’s call to glory makes it more peculiar. Coincidentally, seven years ago, I lost my phone few days to my birthday and this time, I had misplaced my phone on Saturday.
Since 2008 when my mum passed away, my birthday celebrations have always been clouded by memories of her existence, her stay with us and all that she meant to me. I have always tried to separate both events but I haven’t been able to, until lately .
She was unarguably my best friend and my close confidant. Such that I thought, the world ended when she passed away on 21st Sept, 2008. I had lost hope in tomorrow, I had dreamed that the coming days were all there after all for me to make her proud.
I can remember asking myself the essence of my academic pursuit when the one woman I was studying hard for was no more. In December 2010 when I won my first international award, I can remember telling myself there was nothing to rejoice about. It was painful to think mum wasn’t there to celebrate her son, to celebrate the success she had always prayed and sacrificed for. Year after year, the illusion of her non-existence made me think there was nothing to work for.
But after commemorating her demise in 2013, I thought to stop counting; there wasn’t any benefit after all, I had lost some years and it was dawning on me that time was no longer on my side. My counterparts were already running way ahead of me. It was time for me to change my mindset, rethink my attitude towards her death and focus on the future. Even the bible have said that Old things (and that includes my mum’s death) have passed away, everything is now new.
Over these years, I have come to learn that negative events of the past can make it hard to live in the present. Troubling memories can make it hard to sleep or get through the day but there will come a point at which you must let go of the past or it will define your future.
I carried my past with me in the way I thought, talked and perceived the world. Managing this felt like a tightrope walk without an end in sight. Believe me, there was no benefit whatsoever instead I lost time and opportunities.
Until I decided to keep my mind open and leave the past behind, the negative habits that had kept me tethered to unfulfilled dreams and broken promises evaporated.
However, in order to move ahead with my life and step away from the trauma of my mum’s death I did the following;
I Came to Terms with the Effects of My Past Experience
First I acknowledged the challenges of the past because unresolved past experiences can sometimes produce lasting psychological effects. In such cases, it’s important to come to terms with how your past is affecting your current outlook or habits.
An important first step was to stop trying to pretend I wasn’t affected by these past events. The truth is that I didn’t get over the past until I accepted it. The trauma resulting from my past experiences was intense that it affected the people I cared about and prevented me from building strong relationships with my loved ones. They kept me preoccupied with dreams that never came to fruition. This, in turn, affected my outlook and habits in ways that made it hard to cope with obstacles in life.
I Accepted that I Cannot Change What Happened, I Can Only Change How I View it.
You can’t revisit the past, but you can change the way you perceive it and handle it from now on. Dwelling on the past can cause problems without any conscious desire on your part.
I acknowledged this and it helped fix me quickly. The point is I couldn’t have in anyway changed what happened in the past, she is not coming back to life again. I accepted that she was gone and gone for good and my view and mindset about her death have since changed. I picked up my pieces and instead of looking back to my Hero being no more; I now look forward to the future I dream of.
I Engaged My Fears and Altered My Habits.
Sometimes we develop habits that keep us from confronting and moving beyond unresolved experiences. They can keep us from incorporating their effects into our decisions in the present.
Part of incorporating these effects was in breaking these negative habits and confronting my feelings.
Our hope should never be based on what we can see or what’s in our past. Our hope should be based on the Word of God and His promises for our life. We need to use our gift of discernment to follow His plan and stop following our own thoughts and feelings.
It actually takes courage, determination and discipline to face your challenges.
“The past is behind, learn from it. The future is ahead, prepare for it. The present is here, live it.” ― Thomas S. Monson
This is to my mum
Seven years have gone since you gave up the ghost, instead of living with the fear that life had ended for me and my siblings, your legacies are shaping us into a better man and better women, we celebrate your life.
We miss you mum but we have to let go of the pain. We are better propelled by what you taught us.
We love you