There was an old man who had been collecting rocks his entire life. His family watched as time went on and the collection grew and grew. Eventually, the collection took up every available space in his home and he began placing them outside while still keeping them close.
The man’s health began to decline and the family knew they needed to do something about this growing collection. They contacted a couple of museums and told them of the horde in hopes they would be interested in some of the specimens and come out. Perhaps there was some monetary worth in this gathering of stones.
One geologist heard of the collection and was excited to have the opportunity to be the first one to assess the riches residing with this elderly gentleman.
The geologist made arrangements and, with an assistant in tow, he went to the man’s house. After a couple hours of looking through the assemblage the geologist was perplexed. They had yet to find anything of value. Every stone was a simple rock one could pick up on a hiking trail or sidewalk. So he asked the old man, “ Where did all these rocks come from? And why are they here?”
The old man’s response was, “Every time someone has hurt me, upset me, or wronged me in some way I picked up a rock and brought it home.”
The only value these stones had was a painful reminder of the past.
He saved every wrong, every hurt.
They were in his home, held and cherished, as something he never wanted to let go of.
A constant reminder of pain and heartache.
Can you imagine the weight?
Literal and physical?
Everywhere he looked he had reminders.
What would this do to your relationships? Can you hold onto these hurtful memories and still have a close and fulfilling connection? What do you think this did to his emotional and mental state?
While the idea seems absurd, can you think of a wrong you’re holding on to? Is there a hurt or pain you could let go of?
We all do it. Someone says or does something and we are left frustrated and upset. We are angry and struggle to reconcile the actions and experience. Even when we have a conversation with the person and try to clear the air we may be left with a “bad taste” in our mouths.
The old man may not have ruminated on the specific happenings tied to each stone. Perhaps they were simply a reminder of all the times something negative happened. And yet, this is where I think it causes personal harm.
If I choose to surround myself with reminders of sadness how is there any room to see the joy? It seeps into your soul, festering, creating weight and darkness in your being. And this grows until all you can see is the darkness and the heft which comes with it.
This poison drags you down leaving you emotionally tired, mentally spent, or perhaps your health begins to suffer due to the physical toll taken.
Take those stones and remove them from your “house”.
Forgive the infraction and let it go.
Clear out your heart and allow love to fill where pain once resided.
Remove the poison.
Recognize the uniqueness of the other party in the issue and feel gratitude for their presence in your life. Honor their decisions for their path and release the stone. Remove it from your house to no longer be a weighted reminder. Find love and compassion so you can move on to your next experience more joyful and whole.