Clichés are usually only clichés because they are true and today’s is “All my yesterdays have made my today”.
This is especially true in witching. Every experience, no matter how painful or traumatic, is a lesson. It is only if we fail to learn the lesson that the experience is wasted.
That’s easy to say, isn’t it? It is, however, one of the hardest things to put into practice. The other real toughie is “letting go”.
By “letting go” I don’t mean forgetting, far from it. It means, instead of yearning (another Y!) for the past and what one had, or what one could do, one learns to be grateful that at one time, it was possible.
I could sit here and cry my heart out about my horses. I used to ride. Side-saddle, jumping, dressage, western, I did them all but now my body is not up to it. If I tried to ride I would cripple myself even further. So the temptation to mope about how sad I am that I can’t do it any more, is immense…but I have found a way of re-living those experiences and remembering how good they felt.
My very first prize in a Pony Club gymkhana, a bending race won on a gangly 14-hand strawberry roan called Sinbad was the crowning glory of my nine-year-old life. That rosette took pride of place on my bedroom wall even after I had won other, much more prestigious competitions later on. The remembered glow of that achievement can still spur me on to do better.
Stepping forward to take my bow having played the lead in the school play, I was bowled over by the roars of applause, which confirmed my decision to go to drama college. No approbation I ever receive will match that feeling, but it made me determined to entertain and amuse. That is a gift when talking to friends who are down.
Being able to touch dolphins from the cockpit of my boat aboard which I lived for six years … what could compare with that? But that came after a night of fear, sickness and near catastrophe! We had earned that meeting!
My own health problems (let’s not go there!) have all combined to give me understanding and empathy of other people’s woes. I know that when in pain, mental or physical, we tend to lash out, so I can stand and take a roasting that I don’t deserve because I know I am just in the firing line, it’s nothing personal.
I’m far from perfect, but I’m a lot better than I would have been without the disasters, divorces and drama in my life. The good times give me hope but the bad times gave me insight.