In Rehab


"She wants that old thing back..."
For those of you who have been saved since birth, this is a line from I Know by Mr. Beyonce bka JayZ, I was never a big fan of his but this song always stood out to me. No I've never been addicted to heroine, or any narcotic for that matter, but I have been one to lust after  my past. She was my addiction.

I'm sure you're asking how is that possible Ola? How can someone be addicted to their past? Welp, think of it like this... every time you enter a new phase in life you always cast people according to a past tv show. Then you pretend as if everyone has an imaginary script and you expect these new set of people to play the roles of past characters and events. Now imagine the disappointment when they don't play the proper role? Or the despair when they do?

While in rehab, I noticed that I could be in a totally new scenario, yet I quickly fear the new outcomes to be carbon copies of painful events that happened in yesteryears. Additionally, I kept making the same mistakes over and over again. Previously, I didn't understand why I had this pattern in my relationships but I hate redundancy. To me, it reflects that there is still a habit, behavior, decision making process,  lesson, and or a something that had not developed properly and still needs to be corrected and relearned... again. Yes there was progress, personal growth and development, but I often found myself beating Ola up for placing herself in the same predicament. I would always ask myself, how many times do you have to be emotionally beat and broken before you learn? Why are you so stubborn?! Why can't you just get this right?

I thought maybe it was my selection process, so I changed it. Still ended up in the same old same old. I read books and resulted with exactly nothing. 

With my back against the wall, tail between my legs, and my head hanging in shame, I went back to God and asked what I missed. He showed me that although I accepted my past, I never let go of its shame, guilt, desires and frivolous glitter that I thought was gold. I was still clinging to it. This, amidst lacking discipline to put what I learned to action, kept me from moving forward. I was standing in the present but looking at the past. 

So now you're saying, well dang Ola! You've diagnosed the problem, but what's the remedy? 

 Remembering Lot's Wife. She turned around and was permanently stuck there. As a pillar of salt, it was impossible to move forward and inevitable that she stayed there.  Unless you want to stay stagnant in life, stop looking back.

 I've learned that in order to move forward, you have to want to go there. Sounds like McFoolery huh? Who doesn't want to move to the future, acclaim their dreams of a excellence spouse, 3 kids (I actually want 4 but I digress), a white picket fence, a dog named snickers, a super current fabulous car in the driveway and a great job? The answer: A lot of people. How many times a day does your mind trail back to past circumstances? How many times do you rationalize that people will react to you as they once did? Do you tell everyone you meet about that one past experience that "changed your life?" Maybe not everyone but how about every new "close friend?" Although the past has departed we relive those situations and replay them everyday like classic oldies that never die. Well this one needs to die.

Moving forward means putting a conscious effort to remind yourself the past is the past for a reason; greater things lie ahead. For me, that particularly meant reminding myself of all of the things that I have overcome and how those past situations have made me better. I am better for them being behind me. Water under the bridge makes the city look pretty. Whaaa? Yes I added that, but can you imagine a bridge with a bunch of clutter and garbage underneath it? It aint pretty. Besides, when you are 20 years old you don't wear the clothes you wore when you were 10 years old! You get new and better things! 
The point is, I had to stop looking at past characters thinking they were the best and remember that the best is yet to come. Like Big Boi said, 

God doesn't make mistakes there must be something greater* waiting.

Well he said bigger, but I like greater instead. 

It was tough mayne, but knowing that helped me to understand that there's nothing that great back there or it would be here. If for some reason it did appear here again, then there definitely must have been tremendous growth and transformation. That was the first and toughest part. It definitely helped me to finally let go of the shame, guilt, desires and glitter of the past. I'm definitely not the same Ola anymore! The shift happened! Levels have changed. So why should I expect, assume, or tolerate nonsensical repetition or even condemn myself any longer? I gotta be disciplined and move forward with my head held high. As Isaiah 43:18-19 puts it, I have to forget the past in order to look forward and See the New things God is bringing about. 

Free from my past I can joyfully say, I don't want that old thing back! My heart no longer pledges allegiance to it! 
I'm looking to the future and it has been uber exciting!
 but I'll tell you about that next time...

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1 sentiments:

  1. This is a great piece. Everyone needs to let go of the past at some point in order to move on!


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