This is a word, a theme, that has been in my mind and a lesson for my life the past few weeks. Acceptance has been playing a role in a few different ways in my life.
The main thing I am learning is to accept:
What has past, What is, and What’s to come.
I was speaking with a dear woman who has been struggling in the arena of being and feeling accepted. She has had some major life changes and stated she just wanted her old life back, her health back, and how hard it seems to just fit in to this thing called life again, like she used to.
Her story is common as she grasps to discover a new normal. She is widowed, her children all grown, she attended many funerals from 2020 - 2023. She has had to say goodbye's to her once vibrant health in which allowed her to care for her children, and to become a caretaker of her beloved husband. She was in deep grief when she wrecked her car and broke her neck.
She spent long and painful hours in sugery and rehabilitation. She has severe nerve damage, and despite what the doctors predicted, she regained the ability to walk, but still limps. She has some nerve damage in her arm that limits her ability to use it like before. She admitted she feels guilty about wanting her old life back, when there have been so many breakthroughs.
She said she felt guilt as she cared for her husband, and he would push her away, as he tried to do things on his own. The frustration of trying to help and being pushed away made her feel like she failed him in so many ways.
As she sat before me, and her chosen horse, the tears finally began to fall as her silence drew us both in closer to her. Her energy was low, her hands were shaking, and she could hardly catch her breath at times. Words were not needed as we simply sat there, allowing those emotions that she had locked inside for years began to purge through her tears.
It was time for that silent pause.
The pain and regrets from our past robs us of today's peace. The Serenity Prayer has been prayed in order to remind us all of what is within our control and the wisdom to know the difference.
The Serenity Prayer
God grant me the serenity To accept the things I cannot change; Courage to change the things I can; And wisdom to know the difference.
Living one day at a time; Enjoying one moment at a time; Accepting hardships as the pathway to peace; Taking, as He did, this sinful world As it is, not as I would have it;
Trusting that He will make all things right If I surrender to His Will; So that I may be reasonably happy in this life And supremely happy with Him Forever and ever in the next. Amen.
Just for a moment, my own painful past emerged. I had to share with her my takeaways from my own struggle of feeling accepted.
Accepting all that is within life, accepting that the past has happened and that I cannot change it, accepting that the future is out of my control, and accepting what I have been given right now, and to focus on the now.
Acceptance is the first step, accepting all of what has been, is, and is going to be, and being able to move forward with that acceptance. Moving forward with the knowing that acceptance does not mean I cannot change, or improve my life or future. In accepting I do not give up or give in; I accept, say thank you, and take what I have been given to move forward gracefully and do what I can now within myself to create a better future.
If I do accept what has been, I may be stuck in the past. If I do not accept that I cannot see into or control the future I may be stuck in the unknown. If I do not accept what is now, I may be unable to see that there is more and better to come. By not accepting, I become stuck.
When I am mindful and I allow myself to acknowledge and accept; I allow myself to flow, I allow myself to be graceful, and I allow peace and harmony to enter and become what is.
Another lesson in acceptance is the acceptance of myself, which leads to the acceptance of others.
Accepting all that I am, all that I have been, and all that I will be with an open heart and mind. Accepting the mistakes that have and will happen, the imperfections, the learning moments, the failures, the accomplishments.
Accepting it all as it is all a part of me and my experience of life. As I continue on my journey of life, I know I am not alone in learning to love and accept who I am. I am also not alone in knowing that I can work on myself to become the best version of me that I can be, and I have the knowing and acceptance of the fact that my best may look different everyday, as yours may look different too.
I am accepting that I am, and that I can continue becoming.
With accepting myself as I am, I have found myself allowing for more grace to myself and others, more space for being okay with differences and disagreements. The lesson that in accepting myself as I am, I can lean on myself when I am in doubt of my worthiness, and I have learned to let go of taking personal the things others do and say to or near me, and that their actions and words are a reflection of their own journey and they may not have come to their acceptance yet, and that is okay.
Acceptance has been a powerful and life changing theme for myself and my life. I wonder how, or if acceptance has found it’s place in your life…
From my heart, to yours ...