Into the Light

This is a piece I wrote this past February, when I was struggling with some of my emotions. I thought I’d share it on the blog before posting it on the Survivor Creativity Page. I imagine many survivors can relate to these feelings!
~ Kristi

*  *  *

“I do not want to be angry,” she said. “I want to live in peace.”

“So, live in peace.”

“But—”

“But what?”

“I am not.”

“Not what?”

“Peaceful.”

“Ah. Must you be at peace to live in peace?”

“I—  But—  My heart . . . ”

“Your heart?”

“It hurts. I have grief. I have rage. I have . . . shame. I want to forgive. Really, I do. But, I . . . can’t.”

“Then you are not ready.”

“But—”

“So many buts! You cannot forgive until you are ready to forgive. And when you’re ready, forgiveness will happen of its own accord.

“It seems to me you are trying very hard to atone for something that is not yours. Stop punishing yourself. Stop hating yourself. Only then will you be at peace. It is yourself that you need to forgive. It is yourself that you need to love. Until you do that, you will be at war.

“Do not let what has happened turn you against yourself. Do not let his violence create more violence within you. Do not let his actions make you hate yourself. Let him bear his own shame, carry his own burden. Do not carry it for him. Cast it aside. You have your own life to live.

“You imagine he has contaminated you with his hatred. But you are the one who is holding onto it, letting it root and grow inside of you. Let go of his hatred. That is not who you are.

“You were created from love for love. Remember your light. Always remember your light. You are light.

“Shine through his darkness. Shine through your darkness. Let yourself be light. Let yourself be.

“You do not need to wage war against darkness and vanquish it. There is no need for battle or endless struggle. Let go of that. Set down your burden, and simply let yourself shine. There is no battle to win, no demon to defeat. The only war is with yourself.

“Struggle does not make you more worthy. It doesn’t earn you love, happiness or peace. It only wears you out and keeps you from remembering who you truly are. So— Stop fighting. Step out of the struggle. Let yourself live. Give yourself the love and acceptance you so desperately crave. That is your peace. So simple, yet we make it so hard. Let it be easy.”

“Thank you,” she said gratefully.

And, smiling, walked into the light.

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9 Comments

    • You’re very welcome! I’ve been meaning to post it for a while and finally got around to it. I think I need to print it out and put it somewhere I can see it regularly—I so often need the reminder!

  1. What is wrong with darkness? Light and darkness aren’t enemies. They work together to create balance in humans. Darkness is a great source of our creativity when accepted and integrated into our psyche. Also, feeling violent and aggressive is a perfectly natural response to abuse and betrayal and is nothing to be ashamed of.

    • Hi, thanks for your comment. It seems like the piece triggered an emotional reaction in you, which is the goal of any piece of creative writing. I totally agree that light and dark are not enemies and that together they create balance. When I wrote this piece, it was more from the perspective of someone who has been living under a dark, heavy, oppressive blanket of shadow and has not been able to see the light. She has been at war not only with the abuser but with herself. Now she’s in a place where she wants to stop the battle, both within and without, and find peace.

      It’s always interesting to me, as a writer, to see how different people interpret a piece and respond to it. It helps me remember not to be too attached to my own perspective, but to let go and allow people to see it however they do. So thanks for bringing your perspective to this!

  2. Kristi,
    I did not have an emotional reaction. I just shared my own vision of interplay and interconnectedness between light and dark. This vision comes from my own experience with these two dimensions of human nature and the experience of many others who shared similar vision with me. I’ve learned that the only way to get in touch with our light is to embrace our darkness. Paradoxically, darkness starts producing light when we accept it and embrace it.

    • Hi Freken,
      I didn’t mean to presume anything, so I apologize. To me, the mere fact that you left a comment suggests that you had an emotional response–if you had felt indifferent, why comment? But that’s just my opinion. And again, I am in complete agreement with you about the necessity of accepting and embracing our darkness. It’s an essential part of healing. It’s all about finding the balance between light and dark, yin and yang. Have you been on your own healing journey? It sounds like you’ve come to some deep realizations about healing and integration. I appreciate your sharing your own vision.

  3. Well, I am a bit dumbfounded by a logical conclusion that if I had not had an emotional response then I would not have commented. The absence of emotional reaction does not equate with indifference, at least not to me. It was interesting to see your vision of healing and I shared mine. That’s all.

    As far as my own healing journey, yes, it has been quite an adventure, exhilarating, as well as painful, as well as cleansing..

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