Last week I was listening to a webinar healing session on letting go of resentment. I didn’t think this was my own problem, but maybe I would hear something I could adapt for my clients. As the speaker guided us through an exercise, I got a momentary sensory memory of those thick heavy eyeglasses on my face as a child. They made the bridge of my nose permanently sore and red, and trapped my face as well as my eyes. The constriction in my brow and cheekbones was part of this feeling too. Wow — what did I just learn? Is there resentment still trapped in my visual system which is constricting my vision today?
As a child I was pushed to perform, required to do many chores and to excel in school. I did resent this pressure, especially since as the oldest child it seemed I had more demands and more scrutiny put on me than on my younger sisters. Did I somehow associate this “I have to perform, or else!” strain with glasses? About being trapped, I’ve often referred to glasses as “eye-cages”, keeping my eyes from roaming free and from easily looking at my environment in a relaxed way. I remember mornings when I could hear kids outside playing and I had to stay indoors and do housework, which did make me feel trapped. Being in a cage separates you from the world, and from other people, just like glasses separate you from the environment.
Of course parents have to discipline children and teach them responsibility. I think my parents did a great job, as my sisters and I are productive happy healthy women. My mother wore glasses, as did her mother, so they did not see them as cages, just part of Life. I wonder if I still have some resentment of “a woman’s role” which I saw as limited, and maybe in my child’s mind glasses were part of that — my father did not wear glasses until he got them for reading in his 50s. My mother used to chant “A man works from sun to sun, but a woman’s work is never done.” Was my destiny not to ever be carefree and allowed to play?
In addition to healthy visual habits like doing without glasses, walking outdoors looking into the distance, and being aware of focusing on details, I can work on these lingering painful emotions with energy work like EFT or with journalling. Awareness of a pattern is the first step to changing it. I can lovingly massage my face and promise it that I’ll never trap it behind glasses again! I can go outside in the rain, lifting my face to the sky, and delight in the fact that there are no glasses to get splattered with droplets. Speaking of journalling, I can even write a letter of apology to my younger self that we didn’t know more about healthy vision habits back then, and maybe invite her to go on a glasses-free walk to a nearby park with me and swing on the swings.
Just because you discover a painful pattern in yourself, that doesn’t mean you have to keep it. Rather than think in a resigned way “That’s how I’ve always been”, you can think “That’s how I used to be!” and start learning what you need to do to change, turning the steering wheel of your life in a different more healthy direction. The past is only a predictor of the future if you keep doing the same things you’ve always done. Your future is yours to create, so why not get started today on your personal one-of-a-kind masterpiece? And have fun with it!