I happen to love this date and what it means so me, and the following post expresses that meaning beautifully, so I now share it with you again, on the date that it is meant to be shared, with joyful gratitude for the extra fifteen years that I gave to myself when I made the choice to change who I was in that relationship. If not for that choice, I would have died a violent and painful death at the hands of a man who said that he loved me.
Sitting here at my computer, just contemplating... asking myself what is THE most important thing to me, and recognizing that there's a reason that an experience I had fifteen years ago has cropped up in my memories and in conversation more than once over the last several days.
Fifteen years ago, in 1999, I was still in my last abusive relationship. I was VERY unhappy, and I can remember thinking over and over that all I wanted was peace. I just wanted peace. I wanted just one moment of not having to be on guard... just a moment of not being afraid of the fist that could come out of nowhere at any time and punch me in the side of the head.
I had gone beyond wishing for love. At that time I was just barely coming to understand that he was in so much emotional pain - that he had always been in emotional agony - that he was not capable of being truly loving. And me? I did not know how to BE loved.
So I decided to look for something deeper than that. Something that would serve as a foundation for a happier and more loving life, which I wanted to believe could be possible for me.
What I was looking for was peace. You know, real peace. "The Peace that passeth all understanding." (Although, at the time I had no idea that THAT was the peace I was looking for. All I knew at the time was that I was tired of living in constant, acute fear.)
In September of that year I was introduced to an idea that was very new to me. The idea of personal responsibility. The idea that there was nothing "outside of me" that was - or ever could be - responsible for my own personal peace. I was introduced to the idea that my own peace begins with me, and a quote from A Course In Miracles that says, "I can choose peace instead of this."
That was the beginning of an amazing journey for me. A journey that has brought me to this place, right here. My whole life changed, simply because I decided to apply that one idea as I lived each moment. I began living FROM the idea that I really CAN choose to feel peace, no matter what is going on "outside" of me.
Looking back from here I can see that every time I chose to feel peaceful no matter what was going on with him, OR inside my own thoughts, I was aligning my own personal energy with that of Divine Peace. And as I did that consistently, my whole life changed around me... because I, myself, changed within my own life.
As I was sitting here and asking what was the most important thing to me, and "Peace" was the answer that kept showing up, I was being a bit hard on myself about it. Because, well, shouldn't "Love" be the answer to that question? Hmmmm.... Nope. The answer was clearly, "Peace."
PEACE is "my thing." PEACE is the most important thing to me. PEACE is the foundation on which I choose to stand, because from that place of personal alignment with the Divine, I can deliberately see the Divine in others, no matter what they are doing... no matter who they are being in the moment. And there is NOTHING more loving than that.