Choices Made & Prices Paid


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As I said in a previous post, I have been pondering the concept of perseverance recently and despite my best efforts to live in the present I have found myself thinking, more and more, on the past and the roads I’ve traveled this last decade.

It is human nature I guess, the need to play Monday morning quarterback and re-hash what can not be undone, pulling it apart to see if you can capture the moment the thread of your life seemed to unravel in your hands.

Quotation-Bret-Easton-Ellis-past-karma-Meetville-Quotes-152541Well and so, it appears that until I try to give shape to that time and that girl I will not be able to forgive her for her follies and let her fade away.  Odd isn’t it to be haunted by yourself and not at all a comfortable existence.  I’m not a good person, but then so few of us are truly if we are honest with ourselves but I am a better person than who I once was so I will try to find the words and give voice to that which is determined to be heard.

The paradox here is that the choices made in the past are not ones the person I am today would make BUT I am the person I am today because of the choices I made back then.  So how to reconcile the two so that I can enjoy the life I fought so long to create.  It is there I think the problem really lies, in that word ‘enjoy‘.  Do I deserve to be released from the pain or must I live a shadow existence, properly penitent so that all will know that I truly understand the pain that I caused others?

choices1If it were only myself that I damaged it would not be an issue really but like so many things in life our actions affect those around us and in my case I caused harm to one completely innocent whose existence was mine to guard, nurture and love.

Life can surely be conflicted at times because it is here that another paradox exists.  I cannot stay sane, I doubt anyone could, unless I leash the memories and the pain yet I fear that by doing that I will be somehow be condoning or excusing myself and in doing so will lose the chance to build a bridge with one I harmed, if they believe me unrepentant.

choices 3Some deeds have such weight to them that at times you can feel your entire frame shuddering from the pressure and as such I’ve come to understand that to walk the roads that life lays before us there must be balance, a price shall we say for each choice.  My choice now is not to buckle and to do that I need to shed much that I have carried with me for so long.

All my life I have understood the concept of what people perceive is what people believe and so much of what went wrong comes from choices based on maintaining the ‘appearance‘ of things rather than the reality of it.  Pride, such pride and false pride at that, I had that I, in my fear and blindness, destroyed everything I wished to preserve.  It wasn’t until I lost everything that I realized that appearances are only that and that another’s perception of me should not be the measure by which I choose.

So I will talk of things past, more than that I will write of it, forsaking the last of the fear masked as pride I did not realize I still carried until quite recently.  I’m not going back to childhood, adolescence and early adulthood to discuss the whys and wherefores of how I came to come to crisis.  No I’m going to start when the thread started to unravel but could have still been stopped if I had, had the courage to reach out and tell someone what was happening rather than act in fear born of pride to hide any evidence [or so I thought] that anything was wrong.

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To say this in truth is what I wish.

 

This may take two posts perhaps even three but it needs to be done as I will not sacrifice what chance I have for happiness to ghosts of choices past nor will I risk the opportunity to alleviate the hurt of one and acknowledge the debt owed to others.

I will see you tomorrow as tonight I pay a visit to the past and gather what is needed to lay these ghosts to rest.  So goodnight and I wish you a more restful evening than mine shall be but hopefully when this is done I will be able to truly say that the past no longer has a lien on my life.

36 thoughts on “Choices Made & Prices Paid

  1. There is conflicting advice as to how to deal with things in the past that haunt us, and one of the most successful I have found is actually to tell the story (albeit that I tend to leave the most painful bits out).
    You have made a brave beginning of the telling of whatever story you are about to tell.
    “The choices made in the past are not ones the person I am today would make BUT I am the person I am today because of the choices I made back then”
    This is something I try and tell myself over and over.
    Thanks for that.

    Liked by 3 people

    • Thanks for the support and I you have captured exactly what I am going to attempt ‘tell the story’. So we’ll see where we go from that idea soon.

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  2. You struck a nerve in me with your post today. I understand the concept of, “what people perceive is what people believe”, having been on both ends of it. It takes a lot to be your authentic self, and I applaud you taking the steps!

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    • I think at this point if I want to have a full life, an authentic one then I have to truly cast off the last chains the past holds me by. I could have a ‘good’ life without doing that but it wouldn’t be complete so I have to try to work this through. The time is right I guess otherwise I wouldn’t feel so compelled by the idea.

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  3. I love how you have made your words relate-able. If there is such a word. oh boy appearance. wow. I grew up with a mother who put everything on appearance. I was dressed perfectly with perfect hair and shiny shoes, and tights without holes and never a dirty face. I was like a little doll, I wasn’t allowed to play and get dirty. I had to look perfect. It was such pressure. So much so I went the exact opposite way. You know how that happens. I just saw that it stirred such anxiety in her.

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    • For some there is the feeling that as long as everything looks perfect on the surface then it is truly perfect. Of course in most cases the very opposite is true and when faced with that those most committed to appearances break if the see the image changing. I wasn’t quite that bad and it was mainly directed at myself not the others around me but it was still enough to have me damaging my life rather than dealing with the reality of what I was feeling.

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  4. “We do not learn from experience… we learn from reflecting on experience.” ― John Dewey. There are plenty of things I’ve done that I’d never do again, but I’m saying this from where I am now, not from where I was at the time. Therein lies the progress. I’ve got my pom-poms out and I’m cheering you on!

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  5. “The paradox here is that the choices made in the past are not ones the person I am today would make BUT I am the person I am today because of the choices I made back then.”

    These words resonate; so many others in this post do also. I’m at another cross-roads point in life, and am struggling with how to work towards the future, fully live in the present, and not dwell too much on the past.

    I’m sending warm thoughts of support to you for your journey!

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    • And good thoughts to you also – it’s not fun is it, needful but so confusing at times – social paradigms combined with childhood teachings war with personal understanding and growth and you have to resist the instinctive need to defend what it is you are doing.

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  6. There is no doubt, for me, that the universe makes positive out of negative. On so many levels. As you said, you have a past that is negative and yet it made your present which is positive. The same is true for many of us. If you choose to share with us, I would be honored to read and try to understand. thank you for your candor and strength Jenni.

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    • It’s taking a little longer to write but it’s getting there. I though it would be done Friday but I think I’ll work further on it over the weekend while the Challenge Runs. It’s not something to post at the same time as the material for the Weekend Funny.

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  7. This is a great beginning to what will definitely be a successful project. In therapy there are a few things that are basic. Perhaps the most important is honesty — and that’s the rock on which you are standing right now. Getting there can be hard. I’ll bet every one of us can testify to that. For me it was like pulling our barbed wire a painful bit at a time. And how fabulously freeing when it’s lying out there in its own discarded pile.

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  8. You are raising an interesting point that adds to a discussion that has been drifting between my husband and me for the past few days, “The paradox here is that the choices made in the past are not ones the person I am today would make BUT I am the person I am today because of the choices I made back then.” We look back on some choices we made, and NEVER want to return to those circumstances again. We are desperately glad that we wouldn’t make those same choices again, now that we traveled those paths. I take this a step further by wondering why people have such a hard time forgiving, when we are simply making the choices we make based on our circumstances and perspectives.

    Be gentle with yourself. Be kind to yourself, dear Jenni.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I’m trying – that is actually what part of this is about. Living with the choices, glad I’m where I am now, never going back again and at the same time understanding that there were repercussions that I didn’t think of when making choices in the past.

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      • You might go back again to circumstances where you made decisions that you don’t like now. You will likely discover unexpected repercussions to decisions that you make now.

        Be gentle with yourself. Be kind to yourself, dear Jenni.

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      • It’s why it’s taking time to write – it’s being careful but also giving some clarity to my thoughts so I can leave the negativity in the past, not forgetting but not being chained by it either. It’s a weight and the way for me to remove it is to create something that can hold the weight for me. For me that has always been writing, it is the way I give shape to my thoughts and always has been. For some reason the convoluted workings of my thoughts form a pattern when I put them into the written word. So in a sense it is my way of being kind to myself. Thank you so much for the warm wishes and support.

        Liked by 1 person

      • I really like the concept of creating “something that can hold the weight.”

        I completely understand the magic that happens when you write out thoughts. Writing transforms them from dark, overwhelming blobs into sensible patterns. I look forward to reading what you create from this difficult time.

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  9. Pingback: Memory Lane | Unload and Unwind

  10. It is a great post. I loved the title, yes the choices we make in our daily life has it’s bearing on our living, and of course the message and narrative have been beautifully woven. Perception plays immense role in our existence and the source to perception is in our belief system…

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    • Yes, too many of us allow other peoples perceptions determine how we live our lives and how we see ourselves. While its important to be aware of how our actions impact on those around us it is wrong to go too far and let those perception color our choices.

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  11. Life is a paradox, irony of life is that we have sit down and find out where we stand in our life.

    It’s a journey where we can look back but cannot come back…so we are in that zone of conflict of past and the future, and invariably miss the charm and joy of present, there is this present value which gets overlooked or ignored or taken for granted. Every moment we live is special and we should cherish every bit of it.

    Perception matters in this real world, belief system are vital to our thinking…

    Yes, the choices made and the price paid is an apt title…lovely post!!!

    Liked by 1 person

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