We sat around the campfire, holding our paper and pens, wondering why we were awake at 3 o’clock in the morning. When we were all seated, Sergei commenced. “Now, we take the next step in freeing ourselves from the past.” He scribbled on his paper, “Start by naming your list.”
“But what’s it a list of?” Shelly always asked the first question.
Sergei answered “It doesn’t matter. What matters is what you feel in this moment, this heartbeat, this breath.”
I wrote, “Sergei’s Friggin’ List.”
When we’d all named our lists, Sergei continued. “Now, write a list of things you wish you hadn’t done. But you may not include things like I was born. List the things you regret doing.” He paused. “No sharing. The lists are private.”
I started my list with:
1. Letting people talk me into keeping that job.
2. Never telling Sarah how I felt.
3. The fights I had with my brother.
4. Never calling my Dad.
5. Losing Barbara.
I added things I could never forget. Mistakes I’d made throughout my life. Sergei waited until the last pen stopped moving.
“Now, it is time to let go of the past, stop letting it hurt you, stop letting it get in your way.”
Sergei burned his list in the fire. Then each of us did. And when the sun rose, I knew I’d finally cauterised the wounds my regrets had always carved in my heart and soul.
I was free.
I wrote this for Siobhan Muir‘s #ThursThreads, Week 123. Please go read all the entries in this week’s #ThursThreads. They are good reading.