Remember Ghost, that classic 1990 film with Patrick Swayze and Demi Moore? Well I've been thinking about it today, and in particular one line that Sam says to Molly. He'd just 'borrowed' Oda Mae's body (brilliantly played by Whoopi Goldberg) so they could say their last goodbyes, and as he's leaving her for the final time he tells her: "It's amazing, Molly. The love inside, you take it with you. See ya."
Well I woke up this morning knowing that for myself - but unlike Sam, I didn't have to die first! I woke up knowing that whatever feelings I've already experienced, they're mine to keep - I take them with me wherever I go and whatever I do. And you know what? I can choose which ones I'd like to remember and have with me on a daily basis. But somewhere along the line I'd forgotten that (sometimes I really do begin to think that I'm perhaps one of life's slower students!)
I had another dream you see (hmmm... perhaps my 'teachers' have decided it's easier to get the lessons through to me this way, since I'm less likely to argue or stubbornly dig my heels in when I'm asleep?) and once again it involved Cam. For months and months he's been nothing but a dim and distant memory - but he's been making regular nocturnal appearances over the past few days. And you know what? It's actually been incredibly useful and enlightening. Last night's episode has resulted in a huge 'ah-ha' moment for me. There was no malice in this dream. No fighting. No fear. No danger - none of the usual warning signs that show themselves when he appears in my dreams. No, this time there was only comfort. We were in the huge sitting-room at the place I had lived in as a child, both lying together on a sofa that belonged to my mum. Yup - pretty symbolic! Anyway, I was listening to his voice and feeling his heartbeat next to mine. I knew what had happened in the real world, and that what I was experiencing was just a dream. I knew I was not to let him in, and I also knew at the same time that there was something to learn. So I became curious, and dropped the barriers.
All of a sudden I was enveloped by this amazing sense of safety. That feeling of being looked after, of knowing that all is well and that all will always be well - and it felt great. (Even though I was asleep, I'm sure my smile would have been seen by anybody who had been sharing my bed at that moment! Sadly, there were only the cats - and to the best of my knowledge, they can't talk in that way...) Then just as suddenly I found myself sitting in the passenger seat of the car we used to drive - a huge black Mitsubishi which, Cam justified, was necessary to carry around our training equipment... yeah right, I won't even go there. Anyway, it was summer and we were parked outside the office of one of our clients, and I was just opening the door. We were both booked in for a coaching day, and I got out of the car beaming and brimming with confidence - something that in recent months has not come naturally to me. No, it's been a constant and conscious shift of personal determination to recapture that feeling of confidence. I've done it, of course, and achieved great feedback as a result. But it's been a conscious effort rather than a natural flow.
In the dream I realised that, along with many other things, I used to feel safety all the time I was with Cam. In fact, I now understand that I depended on him to give me those feelings! There were two of us, you see... two of us who were both very skilled at what we do (although his skills originated from a completely alien intent and purpose as we now know) who loved each other and who were together through thick and thin. He would always squeeze my shoulder or my hand to let me know we were doing well (or to remind me of his control?) and I would happily walk in to any given situation knowing that we'd get a positive result. In my dream I felt those feelings all over again - and it felt good, really good. Even though I knew those feelings had originated from my being with Cam, I suddenly realised the point I'd been missing. My smile widened, and as I relaxed more in to those feelings, I was suddenly back on my mum's sofa - but this time I was alone. It didn't matter. Because the sensation stayed with me - and the lesson was learned.
Yes, it's true, I now know that in the 'olden days' I was unwittingly giving my power away to him. I believed that I felt the safety because of him. What I now realise, is that in actual fact I was able to feel the feelings through him not because of him. Much like the episode in the summer at the Reggae festival, when I could so clearly identify that the love I was feeling was through Simon and not because of him. I had made the mistake of putting too much emphasis on what Cam brought to me, how he made me feel (even writing that now makes me giggle and let out a great big Homer-style "doh!") and how much I loved him as a result.
But you know what? I was wrong. Because in actual fact it doesn't matter a jot what happened afterwards - in either of those situations, nor any others come to think of it. The fact remains that I had those feelings. Those were genuine emotions that were mine to experience and remain mine to keep. Regardless of whether anyone else is here with me or not - and regardless of, in Cam's case, how false those situations were in the first place. It doesn't matter! He doesn't matter! Nothing 'matters' apart from the fact that in those particular moments I felt safe and secure - and it had nothing whatsoever to do with the person who was with me at the time.
People talk about losses and will use phrases such as "never being able to find someone who'll make me feel like that again!" and I confess that I've also fallen in to that trap myself. For years I mourned the loss of my parents and other people who'd either died or moved out of my life - thinking, wrongly, that the good memories I had of them could never be replicated. But today I've realised that I was mistaken - more so than I've understood until now.
Because today I've realised that the feelings stay with us... forever. Yes, forever - and they're at our disposal any time we choose, so we can dust them off, take them out and experience them whenever we like and as often as we like. Because those experiences were felt through the person or people who enabled us to have them in the first place and not because of them. For me, they were simply mirroring something that I chose to feel inside, something I chose to accept. And I believe the real connection was made with something much bigger and stronger than me - so even though that person I was with at the time may no longer be around, or may have turned out to be something I hadn't expected, the experience is always with me because that over-riding energy from which those feelings come remain with me all of the time, ready to deliver again and again whenever I ask.
So, this morning I awoke with a huge grin on my face, feeling grounded and secure - more so than I can remember for many many months. And I knew that another wonderful gift had been given to me. The gift of knowing that every emotion I have ever had is always mine to keep. I can experience them any time I choose - not just as a memory but right here, in the here and now. You see they're all right here in front of me - just like the clothes in my wardrobe. I get to pick which ones I'd like to wear. I can pack away the ones I don't like, and I can care for the ones that give me a lift. I don't have to use all of them all of the time, and I'm sure my choices will change with the seasons. I'm also certain that my emotional wardrobe will continue to expand - now, though, I'll be conscious about choosing only the best quality clothing that suits me.
Back to the dream for a moment. Even though Cam had gone, I kept that feeling of safety - during the dream, and when I awoke - so now I have the confidence and knowing that whatever I've liked about my experiences so far I can recall and 'wear' for today. As a real thing, not as a memory of something lost. Because they've never been lost at all - they've always been inside of me. As I've said before, I had just been looking outside myself to replace them, mistakenly thinking that they'd gone forever.
The word 'remember', according to Neale Donald Walshe, can be broken down and deciphered as 're-member' - or put another way, the process of re-joining with who and what we really are. My oh my, the mysteries of life are really so very simple aren't they? Like I said, I sometimes think I really must be a particularly thick student....