The request for Guide assistance has netted some amazing gifts for those who have taken advantage of it. One such gift is to see where we still have issues to clear, and how they are blocking us from moving forward.
A quick 15 minutes can pinpoint the issue, how is it blocking, along with a step or two for clearing it. Some people are able to cover these steps pretty quick experiencing the blessed relief of a burden lifted. But the clearing work is only half done at that point; there is still the self to release. That one is the hardest, at least for me. This week’s message is about that final part of that journey.
The Journey to Self-Compassion
There comes a time in life when we must stop beating ourselves up over past choices. Some call it forgiveness, I call it self-compassion; releasing oneself from blame. Getting there is not easy journey because we can’t let go of our guilt. Like barnacles on the bottom of a boat, that guilt clings to us for years afterward. If left unattended, they continue to grow until we become so burdened by their heavy energy that we can no longer move forward.
So how do we release the guilt? Good question! In short, it takes being willing and able to finally accept, and be at peace with the logic that your guides will share with you … when the time is right. Here’s an example.
Like most of you, I have made several choices in my life that left me burdened with guilt. Though I have worked through many, using the Keys of Compassion along with the 7 Stages of Emotional Clearing, there are still a few in which I have not yet been able to forgive myself. (I use the term forgiven because it is easier to write, but I mean released from blame. Forgiveness does not release you from blame. See the Formula of Compassion, the 1st Key of Compassion.)
One of the most painful choices, or situation in this case, was my brother, Keith’s suicide. It has been almost three years since that fateful day in July, 2011. Keith’s death was a wake up call for me that led to my being able to see a family pattern of depression. This realization allowed me to see my parents and brothers in a much clearer light. Behavior that I had believed was caused by downright meanness suddenly made sense in the light of mental illness. Consequently, I was able to release each of them from years of my pent up anger and blame.
The weight off my shoulders was tremendous. Old health issues that I had struggled with for years began improving. But there was still one person I could not forgive–myself.
Big Sister Guilt
I could not forgive myself for not seeing how tormented Keith was. I could not forgive myself for not spending more time with him. I could not forgive myself for not accurately reading his signals of needing me to stay just a little longer, each time I’d visit him on my business trips through Denver. I could not forgive myself for making excuses each time he asked me to go camping with him…
I could not forgive myself for failing him. Keith had looked up to me as his big sister and when he needed me most, I was not there. The adored, sensitive little brother I had vowed to protect could not count on me.
To say I have felt less than useless, a total washout, not worthy of taking up space on the planet, is an massive understatement. The emptiness is a yawning chasm, a gaping hole in my chest; the guilt, a huge and heavy weight in the pit of my stomach. How often I have wanted to die. How often I have said to God and my guides, “Why didn’t you give that burden to me instead?
I have asked my guides for help in releasing this guilt…I know how to clear, I know how to use the Formula of Compassion once I release the anger in Stage 3 … only thing is, I never get past the anger at myself.
It has been an endless stream, a bottomless pit of anguish and pain. I sense that I have spent lifetimes losing Keith, during wartime, or lost at sea … the pain seems eternal … no wonder it doesn’t seem to end. I feel I am trying to clear not just one lifetime, but several …
The point is that try as I might, I haven’t been able to get through all the anger to release myself from my guilt in this lifetime. And all my requests for help seemed to have gone nowhere, that is until last night.
Last night, as I sat in my rocking chair gazing out the window at the setting sun, I thought about how Keith never saw the sun set on that last day up there on the mesa because he had already ended his life.
Just as that thought ended, another popped into my head. You could not have known how Keith was feeling because you did not have depression back then. Only those who have depression truly know how it feels. Furthermore, if you had depression you would not have been able to help Keith because you would have been incapacitated by the pain just as he was, so stop beating yourself up.
I felt like I have been given a reprieve, a release from the prison of my guilt. Actually, worlds cannot adequately describe the feeling. I knew, just as sure as I was sitting there, that this thought was true: I could not have helped Keith.
Just like Keith I would not have known what was wrong with me. Considering our family restrictions of religion along with societal beliefs about mental illness, I would not have asked for help for fear of being seen as somehow defective. I would have struggled just as Keith did and most likely, ended my life prematurely in order to escape the unbearable, crushing pain.
I went to bed that night with a lighter heart and a lighter spirit. As I lay there in the dark, iI sensed my brother smiling at me as if saying, “It’s okay, Jos.” (Jos was my childhood nickname.)
I knew in that instant, that not only had I released myself, but in doing so, I had released Keith from having to feel the pain of my anguish. In the end we both won.
In closing, self-compassion is achieved in a split second. It is a moment of grace given, I believe, after repeated and consistent effort. It is given by our God and our Higher Self/Soul, passed down to us as a message the moment it has been decided to end the struggle. All the clearing work that was needed has been completed and now it is time to move on.
That’s it for this week. If you are one who is struggling with old guilt, I hope this message sheds some light for you.