Swallowing Lye…


If it burns going down…it burns coming back up…I’ll never forget those words I was told as a young nurse…caring for a child who had swallowed lye…well-meaning parents had made the child vomit…which had doubled the damage…
Those words have stuck with me for over 30 years…could be because Bertha keeps whispering them to me…reminding me that…sometimes…things hurt just as much…if not more…coming back up…as they did going down…
According to Bertha…memories of painful events…can be just as caustic as the most powerful poison…
She says if an event was painful when it happened…it’s just as painful…causes just as much damage…every time you bring it back up and share it…even if it’s only to remember it…
That’s why it’s important to know the proper antidote…for swallowing lye…it’s usually drinking milk…for painful life events…it’s usually forgiveness…
I wish it were something easier…for the memories…that is…I find it difficult to keep my mouth shut when someone hurts my feelings…I want to tell the world…justify my feelings…prove I was right…they were wrong…
I find it even harder to turn off my brain…I’m like a cow chewing her cud…I keep bringing it up time and time again…
But…she’s right…every time I bring that slight back up…I feel like crap all over again…and if I’m sharing it with another…they don’t feel so good either…
Sometimes…I’m just not ready to forgive…I’m really angry…I’m really hurt…I want to smolder…but…I’m only harming myself…the longer I hold on to the pain…the more damage is done…
That’s when she reminds me of the forgiveness prayer…I love you…I’m sorry…please forgive me…thank you…said to my spirit…not to the other person…
It’s all about forgiving inside of me first…it’s all about loving me…the resulting feeling of love can then flow to the other person…or not…forgiveness really isn’t about healing them…it’s about healing me…
I wish I could say I am really good at this…that I never bring up old pain…but…I do…to myself…and others…just not so much as I once did…so…I am getting better at forgiving and letting go…
Honestly in the scheme of things…forgiveness is easier for me than drinking milk…just saying…
Jane

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