The Ghosts We Carry

As we move into our edge between 2016 and 2017, do we fall back in fear, or move forward scared. A lot will depend on the ghosts we carry.

I attended a great workshop last night all about relationships – led by Cynthia Loy Darst and David Darst (TeamDarst) two senior course leaders from the Center for Right Relationships (CRR) and Coaches Training Institute (CTI). We spent the evening exploring our relationships with a number of different areas in our lives and talked about what happens when we come to our edges.  For the purpose of this evening the “edge” was the pivotal point between 2016 and 2017. Do we fall back, or move forward scared. If we cross over the edge, what do we choose to bring along with us – good or bad.  

Through the evening, there were several breakout sessions where we had to find new people for discussion. My favorite was the exploration of our “ghosts” at the edges. We had to find someone in the room who resembled one of our “ghosts” –good or bad (a bit scary) – from our past and talk about why, and, what we learned from this ghost that can help us now. Was this ghost an Ally or a Teacher? Are we ready to move past their “teaching”? – are we ready to embrace their support?

We explored what we bring along as our “ghosts” – are they like Casper, The Friendly Ghost – or more like the “Ghost of Christmas Past” - complete with ball and chain.  A few years ago, I would have remembered and felt mostly the “Ghost of Christmas Past” and the heaviness of that ghostly presence. Glad to report, however, that with a lot of personal work since then, I felt instead, a lot of “Casper-like” ghosts around me. And, it was great to realize and remember that they’d been there all along – I’d simply forgotten. I’m sitting here smiling just thinking about them : ) – the choir teacher from 7th grade that showed me so much loving compassion and made me feel strong when she covered me up when I was laughed at because I didn’t realize I had my period showing through my pants– the stranger that bought me a plane ticket home from Europe when I was hungry and broke and realized that my “Freddy Laker” fare was worthless because the airline dissolved – the too many to count teachers and mentors who showed me/reminded me of who I am and why I’m here -  the goodness and incredible support from friends and family through many difficult transitions and illness!  Oh. Yes. They are all still here with me.

We all have many layers – it’s complicated!  We tend to carry around specific layers from people in our past and create our “ghosts” from them – good or bad. We don’t need to forget the “bad”, but we can reconcile with the “teaching” and use it to inform our present and our future – for our good. Not easy. From experience, actively working at a reconciliation with my “teachings” brings great strength and increases my will to continue.  

Last evening began a new exploration of what I wish to carry into my new year. It allowed many of us to gift ourselves added support for 2017. My wish for all is to spend some time conjuring up the ghosts of our past who had been our “Light Bearers” – witnessing our strengths and calling us to stand tall – to move forward – to embrace our perfect imperfection and share our gifts in the greater world. May we remember the Light that came from their embrace is still here within us.  Let’s allow it in and feel it expand.