Thursday, September 27, 2018

Lightening Those Burdens Before You Break

We have two peach trees in our yard.  Years ago when I was new to having fruit trees and growing fruit I neglected to thin my peaches when they were little.  One day when the peaches were almost ready to harvest I went outside to find that a major branch had broken off, taking with it a large number of peaches.  It was a devastating loss, and the tree has never completely recovered on that side where the branch broke.

Ever since then I thin my peaches, and when the peaches grow large, just before they are ready to harvest, I walk around and prop up any branches that might look heavily weighed down.  My husband made these wonderful branch supports out of wood specifically for this purpose.  They give the tree support so it can bear the weight of the heavy fruit without the branches breaking.

At times in my life I have felt like my peach trees in the fall, heavily weighed down and feeling like some of the branches of my life may break under the weight.  In order to prevent this from happening, I have learned the hard way to get some support.  Not being a tree, the wooden kind of support would be of no use, lol!  Humans need a completely different kind of support when life feels heavy!

What kind of support does a human need when life feels heavy and we fear we may not be able to bear the weight of our burdens?  I have had to actually reason this out in my mind and then actively seek the support I needed.  For me this came in 3 forms.  First was the support that came from sharing.  Somehow telling the right person about the burden, someone who is willing to listen and seek to understand, helps lighten the load.  Pick this support carefully.  You don't want to unload and have someone else carrying your burden.  A good support person knows how to listen and is able to do so without taking on your weight themselves.  Miraculous how this works!  And so I found the right one or two people to share my weighted life with.  It lightened my load.

Another form of support that has worked well for me is turning to my higher power.  When I do this, when I tell all my worries and burdens to my higher power and then sit still and listen and feel, burdens can be lifted and replaced by great peace.  That is a promise.  There is no better support.

My third and final form of support was to write.  Sometimes journaling is an excellent support.  Another form of writing is what I call "write and burn".  It gets that negative, stressed, worried energy out of your body and onto the paper.  I chose to write everything that was hard.  When I had written all that I could think of, I took the paper outside, read it out loud so the energy went out into the air, then crumpled up the paper and burned it in a pie tin.  As I watched that paper burning I envisioned my worries evaporating with the smoke from the flames.  When nothing was left but ashes I imagined the same was true of my burdens.  This unusual tool works wonders!

Three forms of support! I cannot change my situation, but I can change how I feel about it, whether or not I am weighed down by it, and what I do about it.  I can take steps to keep from breaking under the weight.

Is there something in your life that is weighing heavily upon you?  What is so heavy that you worry you will break?  Be honest with yourself about what you need.  Do not sit there and hope someone will come to support you.  You must actively work to put supports in place for yourself, whether it be seeking out a safe support person, talking to your higher power, getting your feelings out on paper, journaling, or some other way, get the positive support you need.  It will make a huge difference.
The weight of the burden is lifted.  The support makes the weight bearable, which makes all the difference!