I find it funny how easy it is to recognize problems when they are other people’s but how hard it is to see them when they are your own. How does that start and where do we learn it? Why do we have such a hard time recognizing our own shortcomings, or knowing where they come from? Human nature is forever interesting, and the patterns that carry us through our lessons never seem to let us down. Those patterns have no genetic boundaries either, as they just keep replicating in each succeeding generation until we take the time to recognize and stop the pattern.
I have come to see that life may have more than one side and it is like a mirror. In terms of personality traits I have seen how one trait can twist and turn in a family, looking different in each scenario and teaching along the way.
Let’s use blurting. It is just a personality trait that we may be born with or develop from environment. Is it good or bad… black or white?
Sometimes it is the easiest and quickest way to the truth and can be enlightening… if you are not attached to the situation. On the other side of the coin, it may be words said in haste that haunt you or the listener forever after. Perhaps your feelings have been hurt by words blurted out in haste, but my bet is that down the road, you will experience it again. If you were hurt by it and did not speak up about it and confront it (which we had not yet learned to do as a child with undeveloped logic) perhaps you will shove that feeling down and carry it with you, even subconsciously passing it along to others. The trait can be passed down from a grandmother to a mother and the grandchild, and it will look different on each of them.
Maybe a grandmother blurted something in haste to the grandchild that hurt, causing the child to experience feelings of not being good enough. They don’t yet know how to talk about it so they feel it and “put it away”, but the residual feelings never die. They may sit down there for years and then later on the child is a mother and finds herself blurting something similar to her own child. All of a sudden she is facing that feeling again, only this time is on the giving end. Now she gets to experience it from her adult side that has developed logic and she may see the earlier hurtful comment in a different light. She now has the option to bury it (so she can deal with it again and make the snowball even bigger) or consciously chooses to think it through and perhaps talk about it. When the mother then becomes a grandmother, and perhaps her grandchild blurts something hurtful in haste, the grandmother does not react any more, but loves the child through it…another lesson learned through love. Perhaps we scripted these scenarios and people into our life before we got here, and we did it to help our souls learn. This is just my personal theory, of course. As my husband often says “There is no right or wrong, it just is”. I believe that we are just creating these patterns so we have to look in the mirror and eventually learn to love what we see.
Angela Hanuse is a local artist. She is an active member of the Federation of Canadian artists, gaining countrywide recognition.