Every single soul to ever live on and roam this planet has carried that weighty anchor on his back- the past. It rightly serves its purpose of dragging a person down the suffocating ocean of bitter memories when they break more than just a sweat in the attempt to resurface.
Just because one puts the past behind oneself, it doesn’t mean that the past isn’t following one around. It’s always there like an invisible ghost to haunt the mind and resurrect deadened memories.
It is a misconception that one can run away from one’s past. The past is a fragment of one’s life that one can only learn to accept and live with- much like conditioning oneself to living with a person one knows is never going to change.
And if people can never change, the past can never alter itself. It can be likened to an uncensored film with no facilities to format or modify situations, actions or words.
Coming back to the metaphor of the ocean, a skilled swimmer was once someone who sank in the water in his first attempt to float, but as his mind and body became accustomed to the feel and the smell of the chlorinated water, the fear of sinking in it was soon dispelled and now, he is able to glide in a lissom manner across the water without allowing it to suck him in. Instead, he propels his whole form forward, conquering the demanding water with his buoyancy.
At first, the notion of the water would have conjured up in his mind, the ghost of fear, but as he enhances his aquatic prowess, a wave of realization will sweep over him, following which, he would know that it was the fear of sinking in that water that made him want to resurface.
It might have taken time, but in the end, it paid off. The water remained the same, but the boy who went into it like a sinker came out of it a full-fledged swimmer.
Likewise, the past will always remain the same. The person bearing it like a burden can decide whether to succumb to it or whether to overcome it.