It has come to my attention that many in my life are learning how to ‘unpack their backpack’. I use this phrase when talking about going through all of the things that we cary with us that we haven’t necessarily healed from yet.
I was recently having a conversation with a friend that lead to me describing therapy as the process of unpacking your backpack. Because, to survive whatever it was that you needed to survive, you shoved it all down in the bottom of your backpack so you could escape. Now that the experience is no longer a threat, you have to start cleaning out what you shoved down in there. Because it may no longer be in front of you and you might not see it everyday but you cary it with you wherever you go.
I started with therapy to assist in the cleaning process, going to a professional cleaner. However, I am fully aware that as much as I preach talk therapy, it does not suit everyone, nor is an option for many. But one thing that should be an option, when the time is right, and you tend to know, is that to unpack what is cluttering you there has to be some acknowledgment. You have to acknowledge how heavy your backpack feels to understand that it needs to be cleaned out and organized. Getting rid of guilt gum wrappers and that old moldy sandwich in the bottom that resembles that ex you can’t stand. When acknowledgement happens everything comes with it. You find your voice and in doing that you find what type of therapy, meditation, journaling, exercise, or maybe all of the above works for you. Your healing process is your own and does not have to resemble anyone else’s.
It’s ok to clean out your backpack in your own way and in your own time.