June 18, 2017 · 4 comments · Categories: Musings · Tags:

I have a backyard fence that is somewhat overgrown by the plants in the neighbors’ yard. They include an orange trumpet vine that gives me a lovely view from my kitchen window (as shown here), but I also have to cut back other, more intrusive stuff on occasion. Last year a faster-growing vine climbed over the fence and got into a willow in the back corner, and I didn’t notice it right away; so when I cut off the stuff that was growing over the fence, part of the vine was left hanging from the branches, out of my reach. One of these days I’ll go out with a stepladder and clean it up, but the ground is often muddy in that corner, which gives me an excuse to put off doing that chore.

Dead vines hanging from tree branches

Seeing the remnants of that vine hanging all over the place left me thinking, sort of randomly, about the New Age intuitive healing practice of using a crystal to sever old strands of negative energy. Whether or not one believes in it (which isn’t really what this post is about), looking more closely at old memories and emotions often does leave me feeling that they are tangled up with all kinds of other past experiences.

That’s also what traditional psychoanalysis is about—bringing past memories into conscious awareness and sorting through them. Going to see an analyst for self-improvement purposes has fallen out of fashion in recent years, although it was quite popular in some circles a generation ago. Now we read self-help books, visit websites that give advice on nurturing ourselves, and generally try to untangle our own internal dramas as best we can manage it.

Although I would say that fits in fairly well with the modern trend toward learning more about our world and taking more responsibility for the course of our lives, it sometimes can leave us with long strands of bothersome thought patterns spreading unnoticed where we don’t want them—just like the vine that climbed over my fence. Then we’re left with a lot of cleanup to do. The job never gets completely finished, either, because those mental vines always seem to go wandering in unexpected directions.

Still, if we’re reasonably vigilant, we can end up with a landscape that looks pretty good.


  1. That is a great metaphor, well worth pondering. Have a wonderful week, Meg.

  2. Very true , thank you for sharing:)

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