It takes two to tango, but contrary to popular belief, closure is a solo dance — a homecoming to self and reclaiming one’s power once and for all
I just need to get some closure.
What is ‘closure’ after all? It’s a sentiment that gets tossed around regularly in conversation. Who hasn’t uttered those words at some point? But I question if there really is such a thing — or at least in the way we build it up to be. Does it actually provide us with an energetic portal to walk through in which we can literally close (or slam) a door behind us? Perhaps, but maybe not.
In getting closure, we often look to others for answers, explanations and the keys to release us from our own emotional handcuffs. All the while our soul is crying out, give me back my power — and btw, who said you could have that in the first place?!
We inflate the role of others in our heads to the extent that we cannot find this ultimate peace or relief without their participation…so we carry it, usually for far too long as it slowly gnaws away at us. But I’m calling this ‘closure’ business out because I think we’re going about it all wrong.
Maybe closure is just an imposter and an excuse who doesn’t know how to dance solo. Think about it. What if instead of asking for our power back, we learned to take it back — better yet, to never give it away? Now we’re talking.
Look, we’re not immune to feeling and to responding, nor do we want to be. We are living, breathing, pulsating beings absorbing the world around us and that is part of what makes us so magnificent — provided we don’t slip away in the process.
I recently had a conversation that was difficult to have. It had been building up for years (like over a decade), which means it was larger than life in my own private Idaho than it was in reality (welcome to the human experience). And while it was cathartic in some ways, it also wasn’t about the change it could impart between 2 people — it was the surprising change it brought about in me.
By showing up, standing in truth and being able to express sentiments without the fanfare of anger, sarcasm, pain or emotion — I realized sitting there in that room, that I had already achieved what I had set out for: ‘closure’. I was released…and I had been the captor all along.
Closure is like scar tissue, the remnants of some pain or life trauma. But the pain we experience in life is also an invitation into deeper exploration, a chance to ask ourselves questions we may never have asked ourselves before:
- Why does this hurt (what’s attached and underneath it)?
- Have I felt this before (is it a pattern)?
- Why am I in conflict with this person (or still in conflict, what’s taking so long)?
- What else is this bringing up (where else in my life is this showing up)?
- What now…what do I want now?
When the crappy, painful, life events happen that cut through us and crack us open…we get to choose what comes next. We get to choose to be a victim or a life student, a martyr or a maestro of our own destiny — or maybe a bit of both.
I know because I was a victim for many years. I wore my victimhood like a badge of courage — they were the emotional shackles on my ankles that bound me to that story and that version of myself.
Don’t get me wrong, I wasn’t curled up on a sofa, immobile — quite the contrary. I self-medicated with busyness and the art of surviving. But I allowed my power to be zapped and my own limited thinking to bloom and thrive. I see how it happened. I understand why I was scared and scarred. I didn’t have tools and I didn’t think I had time to look for any. Oh, I had much to learn and connect.
Have you ever fantasized about sitting down with someone who has ‘wronged’ you to hash something out? It’s like unveiling the Boogey Man under the bed…or the great and powerful Wizard of Oz from behind the curtain — it’s all a little anticlimactic and no one’s as daunting as we built them up to be. This is precisely what we do with our fears, unworthiness and perceptions of others. They grow far more powerful in theory than they are in reality.
Closure isn’t about anyone else, it’s about uncovering the parts of yourself that are ready to be seen.
In their vulnerability they are pure and simple. They are truth…and being able to declare them will set you free. They are also gentle, compassionate and kind because they emanate from your goodness. They do not seek revenge rather release.
I’m not talking about cleaning up messes, disagreements or hurt feelings. As long as we interact in the world we will need to navigate relationships with friends, colleagues, family and strangers — to practice clear communication. And that’s a beautiful thing.
True closure is a homecoming; trusting, knowing and owning oneself. It isn’t an exterior experience, rather one that can only occur within. In other words, it’s a reminder that you had the power all along. You simply decided to reclaim it.
Have you been seeking closure somewhere in your life — how does this pop up for you? Let’s bring some ‘closure’ (wink) to this by sharing our experiences here in the comments; the place where we can connect through our stories.