"And acceptance is the answer to all my problems today. When I am disturbed, It is because I find some person, place, thing, situation -- Some fact of my life -- unacceptable to me, And I can find no serenity until I accept That person, place, thing, or situation As being exactly the way it is supposed to be at this moment. Nothing, absolutely nothing happens in God's world by mistake. Until I could accept my past, I could not stay sober; Unless I accept life completely on life's terms, I cannot be happy. I need to concentrate not so much On what needs to be changed in the world As on what needs to be changed in me and in my attitudes."
AA Big Book
This is the way of the peaceful adult child. Our aim is to live at peace with ourselves and others. With ourselves we may be constantly fighting against the anger, fear and guilt that permeated our lives. With others we keep ourselves busy with some cause or belief we try to impose on them. Life is ever changing, and acceptance is an ongoing process.
There will always be some new person or situation to accept. Wanting to change someone else’s behaviour to suit our needs is okay. However it is being mature enough to see the futility of this as well as accepting that we may or may not achieve our aims that keep us on the path of peace.
It is not rolling over. It is becoming wise enough to know that you and your present and future are more important than your past. This is where your power lies. Wrestling with the past is like wrestling with air: you never know where your opponent is and whether or not you have him in submission. You can never win and the wars can never cease. However, accepting your powerlessness over the past and people frees you from being a victim of your emotions and of circumstances beyond your control.
We have to be gentle with ourselves as getting to acceptance is a process: Our conscious mind will go through disbelief, frustration, rejection and resignation first. This can propel us to try harder, creating searing resentments and exhausting ourselves or it can scare us into giving up. It’s too much like hard work.
Yes it is and it will always be. So accept it. Knowing our final aim –on what needs to be changed in me and in my attitudes: a final aim that is ongoing, will keep us on track.
Prayer and meditation, sharing with safe others, reading productive material all keep the mind focused on what needs to be changed in “me”. As is asking ourselves each day “How is this serving me”? Our behaviour and our attitudes melt and reform to our new way of thinking. Looking for the good in every situation is a skill worth cultivating.
Striving to live each day as fully and confidently as we can; come what may, will help us create a future that heals and balances out the past.