Moving From a Painful Past to A Worthy Present

Moving From a Painful Past to A Worthy Present

“I am no longer willing to drive into the future using my rearview mirror as my tool of navigation.”  Tony Robbins


Does our past decide our present and future?  Can we press Stop on that tape player in our mind so that we can move forward and not get stuck in those old hurtful messages of our past?

We all have our childhood hurts; ones that if we fall victim to, can at best hold us back from being and doing great things with our lives and at worst can wreck severe havoc.  It’s so easy to hang our hats on our past and assign blame as to why our lives are not going well.  It takes choice, awareness and lots of inner work to become the creators of our lives instead of the victims of it.  It’s not easy but it is doable when we decide that we and our lives are worth it.

Joselyn Smith-Greene has written a poignant piece (guest blog post) on this concept.  She has transcended her past and become an active and positive creator of her life.


My dad passed away the year my oldest son was born.  He died in the hospital alone.  My father was a provider; however, that is where his parenting skills ended.

I miss my dad but not in the way most people miss a parent.  Instead, I miss what could have been; the relationship we could have had and the special father-daughter moment we could have shared.  Whenever I see a loving exchange between a father and daughter, I can only imagine what that feels like because our relationship was always strained.  He wasn’t a warm and fuzzy kind of guy.  Oh sure, to others he was the pillar of community and appeared to be the perfect father.  But inside him there was a raging war and huge turmoil that, I believe, he didn’t recognize or understand.  It took its toll on our family.  But I can’t speak on their behalf, only my own.

I didn’t have the life experience to realize or understand the hurt that festered within him.  I was consumed with the pain he was causing me.  He made me feel ugly, stupid and less than.  It’s a wonder I didn’t turn to drugs or alcohol to anesthetize the pain.  Instead, I journaled  about my hurt and sadness.  I am so thankful that keeping a journal was a requirement for a high school English class.  Looking back, I can only imagine the horror on my teacher’s face when she read my entries.   They weren’t pretty.  I held nothing back and I’m so glad I didn’t.  Journaling saved my life.  It forced me to feel the pain, not bury it.  Yes, there were times I wanted the excruciating pain within me to end.  I longed for a normal father daughter relationship; however, I know now that was an impossibility.  He couldn’t give me what I needed because he didn’t get what he needed.  He lacked the skills and awareness to resolve his hurtful past, and so his anger surfaced often at my expense.

If only I knew then what I know now.  Pain is an unfortunate but necessary part of life.  The painful experiences have the most profound effects on our lives.  Nobody is immune or gets a free ride.  However, what we do with the pain is what makes all the difference.  My fractured relationship with my dad made me stronger.  I persevered through the torment and “less than” feelings he inflicted upon me.

I have learned to silence the negative messages that don’t serve me.  I have chosen to use the pain I endured for the greater good within my life.  I have chosen meaning from the pain instead of wallowing in its darkness.  I have chosen to stop the cycle of abuse by healing myself.

Forgiveness is huge.  I forgive my father.  I know now that had he known better, he would have done better.   He would have nurtured me in the most loving way.  He would have been my biggest fan and my loudest cheerleader.  He would have had a hand in championing his little girl to greatness.

Today I know I am worthy and that I matter despite my father leading me to believe otherwise.  His ugly words no longer subtract from my worth.  Sometimes you have to find a way to give yourself what was taken from you.  Self-care and self-love are paramount to appreciating, affirming and celebrating who I am and the woman I have become.


joselyn_2434_200_x_257-1Mom, wife, daughter and sister, Joselyn puts a creative spin on everyday life, making each day fulfilling, exciting and fun! Creativity is her best friend, her super power, her therapy and her saving grace. Viewing the world through her creative lens allows Joselyn to embrace present moments, appreciate perfect imperfection and recognize life’s endless possibilities. Joselyn shares her creative pursuits as well as the meaningful remnants of her everyday life on her blog, The DIY Spot (

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