The other night I suffered an attack of many feelings: anger, sadness, anxiety. I left the door to my room open. The male dog saw it, and I imagine he thought, aha, they never let me in that room. Let me enter and mark my territory, which is the only place that I am missing in this house.
When I came out to scold him, my son grabbed him, took him to my room, told him firmly “You don’t do that there,” and spanked him. When I saw that, I went crazy. I started screaming that I couldn’t deal with violence, that he should never do something like that in front of me again. I was so upset that I locked myself in my room to cry. After a while, I calmed down and began to analyze the situation.
These are the things I could have done:
- See my son as an abuser. (Which I knew he wasn’t.)
- Be angry with him.
- Feel like a victim. Choose to be unhappy instead of choosing peace.
These are the things I did:
- Breathe deeply to calm myself.
- Recognize that there is nothing outside of me.
- See my son as innocent.
- Search within me to see what was activated in me.
- Acknowledge that my reaction was exaggerated because it was just a pat.
- Ask my Holy Spirit to help me see things differently.
After a while, the following memories came to mind:
- When my two children were young, I spanked them on the legs when they misbehaved.
- I learned that from my mother, and surely, she learned it from hers.
- I felt great sadness and guilt.
- I understood that I didn’t know better at that time, but thank God I have for a long time.
- I asked my Holy Spirit to help me forgive myself and my mother.
- I thought of Lesson 34 in A Course in Miracles that says “I could see peace instead of this.”
- After this, I closed my eyes and was silent for a while, breathing deeply. After a while, I felt great peace and knew that the process was over.
In the morning, I spoke with my son and apologized for my ignorance when he was a child. His response was, “to forgive you again? I forgave you the first time you asked me a long time ago.
Obviously, the one who has to forgive me is me.
And with this story, I invite you to do this process every time an emotion, other than peace or love, arises. By doing so, I spared myself many days of anger and suffering and was at peace again.