A Day in a Life: Evolving Recapitulation

I really am in the final throes of editing my next book in The Recapitulation Diaries series: The Edge of the Abyss. For this week’s blog I post another excerpt, as I am conserving my time for editing. As the recapitulation proceeded I constantly discovered just how my inner process was leading me to learn what I needed to learn about myself. Guided by the intent of the process of recapitulation itself—its intent set long ago by the Shamans of Ancient Mexico—I was swept up in that intent, for better or worse, married to it. Though I often felt that I had married a monster, at other times I knew I had married a prince. In the end I discovered that I had been married to myself all along—if that makes any sense! I don’t believe this excerpt needs the same kind of warning as some of the others that I’ve posted. It’s really just about gaining valuable insight about the journey of life and moving forward with renewed intent.

"Look what I bring!" my child self says... Bottle art by Haldis. Photo by Jan Ketchel
“Look what I bring!” my child self says… Bottle art by Haldis. Photo by Jan Ketchel

From February 6, 2003: My son, sick with the flu and a 103° temperature, sleeps in today. I get my daughter off to school and contemplate what I woke up thinking about earlier this morning: shame, and the child inside me who continues to carry it around like a heavy boulder. I’m pretty sure the adult self let it go a long time ago, but the child self sneaks into the adult world at times still bearing this heavy burden. She plunks it down in front of me and says: “See! It’s still here.”

As I peer at this big boulder of shame that she drags around, I suddenly experience complete separateness from this child self, and with utter clarity I understand that she is the one who so tightly rolls into that fetal position every night. Clutching all the pain and shame, she’s still very much alive, residing somewhere deep inside me, while I—the adult—have gone on into life. I’ve grown up and done a lot of adult things, distancing myself from her as much as possible in order to do so. Now, I clearly understand that I went on so I could one day return to this moment, so that I could one day be in the position I’m in right now, intent upon rescuing the child self still inside me and, in so doing, rescue myself.

Until today, I’ve had such a difficult time seeing and believing myself to actually be more than one being, fearful of what it might mean about me, perhaps that I’m crazier than I thought. But only in acknowledging that I am many beings simultaneously will I be able to embrace the crystal clear insight that right now, in this moment, hits me: fragmentation is a valuable skill!

In one aspect of fragmentation, my fully present adult self is able to step outside the memories and from her perspective carefully and sensitively guide my child self. I see this as an evolving aspect of the recapitulation. I realize that in so doing I’m finally able to reciprocate what my child self once so protectively did, as she fragmented, repressing the memories in the process, so I could grow up. I’ve simply not been in a position to fully embrace this insight until now, but it’s very clear that fragmentation is an important tool that has a valid place in the healing process.

"I can do this now," my adult self says... Photo and painted bottle art by Jan Ketchel
“I can do this now,” my adult self says… Photo and painted bottle art by Jan Ketchel

As I continue to hone the use of this skill, I imagine that all of my parts will eventually merge. As my adult self joins forces with my fragmented child selves—my sixteen little girl selves—and grants them each an opportunity to express themselves, they will no longer be alienated parts, separate from the whole. Once each part has told her tale and been fully acknowledged for both her pain and her bravery, another part will link into this healing process, another part offered the way home. Clarity and wholeness will eventually come, as new ideas and new perceptions about life in general and the past in particular are accepted and assimilated too.

It’s really the job of the adult self now to make all this happen, to introduce the guidelines, for only she has the wherewithal and the stamina to take on this monumental task. It’s what I’ve been preparing for. She must nurture and prepare each of the fragmented selves now too, make them welcome, and fully assimilate them into the inner circle of the new self. It can’t happen without a strong adult presence, a loving, respectful, and compassionate self. That kind of maturity is key to this whole process.

Thanks for reading!
Jan

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