Sometimes when you least expect it, a part of your past, long forgotten waves at you across the distance, and like it or not, your attention is brought back to it. It could be an old friend, an old lover or just an old place forcing you to turn around from where you stand and look back.
There are times when you have moved so far away from that world which once held you that you’ve forgotten it even existed. Then it calls you back, and you return for a visit. However, like Alice revisiting Wonderland as an adult, the dark recesses don’t look quite as dark, and the things that once consumed you, don’t have so much of a power over you anymore. You know there is a demon to slay, but either because it has shrank, or you have grown, the demons don’t look so big anymore. The powers they once had over you somehow diminished with time.
The past is a funny place to be.
There is always an option of staying there, safe in the comfort of old stories and replaying scenarios, where you are still that same person stuck in your version of a child’s wonderland. You can stay, in the same grooves made by your parents, moving on to the same lives they led, the same patterns, the same habits. It is a familiar place, one you know deep in your marrow, where the outcome is one that you have grown to expect.
Sometimes however, the universe has other ideas.
You take a potion, or you make a small decision and things are set in motion. Somehow without even realising it, you have stepped out of that place. The old cast is still there, but you are no longer part of that story, or they are no longer part of yours. Looking back on the person you were, you realise that you are no longer that. What you thought, that image you wore as armour was but a role that you played, a mask you put on for that ball.
Then you realise that through the years, layers and layers of yourself have been shed. Those bonds that once held you, the bonds you once saw as a safe embrace are just that, the bonds you put on to stay safe, to stay in a place where you didn’t need to change. Once the thread unravelled, there was no turning back.
You have become a complete person on your own.
You know now that no ties will make you more of a person and no great love would need you to be less of who you are. You’ve found that as much as you have love to give, you are also worthy of a love that is just as great. Revisiting the Wonderland of the past has opened your eyes to the reality of now. You know now that your past, the stories that were told to you and the future are not the same.
In a deep backbend, you allow the back of your heart to push you forward, and that’s sometimes how life works. A push from the past sometimes reminds you that you are here, in a moment that is not that, and that everything that has happened has led you here.
Revisiting Wonderland gave you a moment to bow and say ‘thank you,’ for the part of your journey you shared, for the lessons learned and for the role the past has played in your journey towards yourself. One bow, one nod of recognition, like two distant strangers passing each other on the street and then you let go and move on – to your separate lives, to your separate futures.
You return to the embrace of the friends who share your life now with your mask removed, as you stand strong in your vulnerability. You catch the eye of the person who makes you smile in a knowing look you share with each other. They were always there, laughing with you, patiently holding you when you needed, facing your fire when it raged. Now finally, you take each other’s hand to start building from the present.
The past is done.
That book is closed.
You are free.