The Other Side of Me: The Damndest Things

Have you even noticed how the damndest things happen — events occur that are in total sync with your life and yet so out-of-the-blue unexpected that it must be destiny? I’ve been having a lot of those experiences lately. Former boyfriends (yep, the hurtful dudes) suddenly appearing in my life after decades without a word, notes from my father falling from a book I hadn’t picked up in forever, even an angry picture of him I had never ever seen before, fluttering so peacefully to the floor.

Old photos

Each of these experiences would have triggered a deep pain in the past. Yet recently, I’ve found that they don’t hurt. Those triggers are healed now — and even the damnedest things don’t activate them anymore.

Wow, what kind of a wonderful feeling it that? To hear those old songs, see those old pictures, remember those old faces that held so much pain and realize they are, well, inconsequential. That’s the gift of being on the other side.

I remember way-back-when, at the time of the pain or betrayal. Wondering as I curled into a ball and sobbed over that love that left me, or the memories of my father’s horrors — wondering if I’d ever heal, if the pain would ever go away…thinking that I would never be the same again.

And here I am. Healed. There is so much freedom in saying that.

For example, a few nights ago my phone rang. I didn’t recognize the number but I answered the phone thinking it was some poor telemarketer who I’d try to be nice to as I turned them away.

The voice on the other end of the phone was like yesterday. It was the first love of my life, some 30 years later. He’d cancelled the wedding at the last minute, left me with the dress, invitations out, wedding presents everywhere, people in town for the event. What a mess — right there in front of everyone in my home town and the kids who told me no one would ever want me — the smart girl.

At first I thought it was my imagination and it couldn’t be him. But then he asked how I was, and I knew it was very real. I’d heard from him a few times through the years — random hits out of the past — usually from a bar when he’s had a few. Each and every time my heart fell through the bottom of my feet and my head spun as the ‘remembered pain’ flooded my being.

And this time I felt nothing.

Well, that’s not true. I was annoyed. I had a lot to do, and listening to him act as though nothing had ever happened between us, asking how I was doing like we were the best of friends after all these long years. It was so phony, so insincere and so downright … annoying.

All those years ago laying on the floor sobbing after he left me, I was right — I wouldn’t ever be the same again. I am not the same as I was then. Never will be, and what’s more. I don’t want to be. I’m better for the experience, for the process of healing, and for stepping into the other side to create the life of my dreams.



Photo Credit

“Old photos” faungg @ Flickr.com. Creative Commons. Some Rights Reserved.

Recent Bel Brown, Thriving On The Other Side Articles:

  • The Power of a Pause
  • The Power to Change Our Story
  • The Power to Co-Create
  • Of Faith and Fear
  • What’s in a Secret?

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